This week, the major media outlets have been talking about the latest way malware has found it’s way to your machine….when you type the wrong web address. It’s nothing new- in fact, it’s one of the oldest tricks in the book that hackers have used to direct you to their site filled with advertisements/spyware. What’s unique this time is that it’s not when you mess up typing the address itself, but when you mean to type the .com extension, and type .om instead. The new .om extension is a country-specific domain for the country of Oman, however because of it’s likeness to .com, hackers have been buying up popular .com website names at the new .om extension in case people mis-type the address. It’s a nightmare- because people who often mistype popular sites like facebook or etsy, can unknowingly get redirected to facebookc.om, or etsy.om before they realize what they’ve done wrong…and in some cases simply loading the website is enough to infect your computer with malware or advertisements.
The best way to safeguard yourself is to do a double-take before you actually hit enter going to a new website, and to run a periodic scan of the popular malware scanner (http://malwarebytes.org) every so often to ensure you’re machine is ok. If you notice that something isn’t right with your browser, as soon as you notice problems, bring it in for service (or contact www.canyonero.org!). We all know slow-typers….or ones who frequently make typing mistakes (that’s me!)….so share this post with them so they’re aware of the potential problems ahead!