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Google Reports The Pirate Bay as Malicious Site
August 12, 2010
Thomas Mennecke
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Here's something a bit odd. If you do a search on The Pirate Bay, Google flashes a warning to the end user. Apparently, The Pirate Bay is dishing up some rather nasty malicious software without the end user's consent. It's the first time we've heard anything like this, since The Pirate Bay is generally known as a safe site to visit. Here's the warning that appears:

Of the 1136 pages we tested on the site over the past 90 days, 2 page(s) resulted in malicious software being downloaded and installed without user consent. The last time Google visited this site was on 2010-08-12, and the last time suspicious content was found on this site was on 2010-08-12.

Malicious software includes 1 trojan(s), 1 exploit(s). Successful infection resulted in an average of 2 new process(es) on the target machine.

Malicious software is hosted on 2 domain(s), including greatersecurity6.com/, bbcxq.com/.

8 domain(s) appear to be functioning as intermediaries for distributing malware to visitors of this site, including cltomedia.info/, clicksor.com/, openx.org/.

This site was hosted on 3 network(s) including AS51040, AS34109 (CB3ROB), AS50066 (TALISMOON).



The malicious software attack warning appears limited to users of FireFox. We spoke with a Pirate Bay IRC operator who goes by the name Tequila, who suggested it's probably a false alarm.

"In the past it has been either false claims of a malicious website from somebody or multiple people, or a spider detected something incorrectly...It's likely some sort of advertisement, since there's over 5 million users a day on the site, a lot of third party ads get served."

Considering that The Pirate Bay isn't known as an attack site, the real fault likely is within an advertisement that was overlooked. We're not sure what this malicious software does or its severity, but in the mean time, it would be best to block the sites documented in the report and keep your anti-virus software updated.

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