Back to School? Be Careful of Malware Hiding As Textbooks


Searching textbooks and online essays exposes learners to various malicious assaults, as scientists from Kaspersky Lab have discovered following analyzes of information collected over the previous academic year.

With everybody searching for the highest price in the back to college season, some will try out their opportunities online instead of paying off instructional material.

This may seem like a deal at first, but it also has many hazards because attackers attempt their utmost to infect your computer with malware downloaders that can download and run banking trojan and ransomware or worms that can be quick to spread to all your contacts and devices on your network.

Over 365,000 attacks every year. After examining attacks using malicious documents with educational filenames directed at the users of Kaspersky, the researchers found that threats by actors targeted potential educational victims more than 356,000 times over the last academic year.

“Of these, 233,000 instances were malicious essays downloaded to more than 74,000 people’s pcs and which were successful in blocking our alternatives,” discovered Kaspersky.

More than 30,000 users attempted to open such files

“About a third of such files were textbooks: 122,000 assaults of malware disguised as textbooks were identified. ” Out of all kinds of malicious textbooks the target people were most frequently searched to download their pcs, English, math, and literature, respectively with 2,080, 1,213, and 870 downloads.

Although bad actors don’t care really about what malware they infect their victims as long as they can steal their information or control their equipment, the most popular were a downloader of MediaGet, WinLNK.Agent.gen and the Win32.Agent.idx downloaders and Stalk worms.

Malware is camouflaged as material for education

While the MediaGet downloader will download and install only an unneeded torrent client, the other two downloaders are able to lower a wide range of Malware Stresses on victim’s computers including adware, cryptominers, Spanish software, bank Trojans, and ransomware capable of encrypting all their data in the most serious cases.

Stalk, on the other side, Kaspersky utilizes spam messages to reach the victims ‘ pcs and instantly try to infect linked USB flash phones and as many phones as possible on the same network.

Stalk may also e-mail contacts to the victims, an efficient way of communicating that many individuals do not believe twice before opening an essay or a textbook, particularly if they need it.

Furthermore, Stalk “can download other malicious apps to the infected device and copy and send documents suddenly from your desktop to malware holders.” If you are interested in finding instructional material via the Internet, be careful about your websites, maintain your software informed, and contact the individuals who send you the attachments in order to verify that they are indeed the ones who sent them.

Credit: Bleeping computers

Mark Funk
Mark Funk is an experienced information security specialist who works with enterprises to mature and improve their enterprise security programs. Previously, he worked as a security news reporter.