Monday, February 1, 2010

"Alarming" rise in cyberattacks at social networks: Sophos

 There has been an "alarming" rise in spammers and hackers hunting for victims at online social networks, according to a report released Monday by computer security firm Sophos.

A "Social Security" investigation revealed an "explosion" of spam messages and nefarious software targeting users of social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.

"Computer users are spending more time on social networks, sharing sensitive and valuable personal information, and hackers have sniffed out where the money is to be made," said Sophos senior technology consultant Graham Cluley.

"Social networks and their millions of users have to do more to protect themselves from organized cybercrime, or risk falling prey to identity theft schemes, scams, and malware attacks."

Facebook last month announced an alliance with Internet security specialty firm McAfee to get members of the world's leading online social network to better defend their computers.

"Facebook is by far the largest social network -- and you'll find more bad apples in the biggest orchard," explained Cluley.

"The truth is that the security team at Facebook works hard to counter threats on their site -- it's just that policing 350 million users can't be an easy job for anyone."

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