Study: Online videos may be conduits for viruses

As reported by the Associated Press in an article published today, there is a study done by the Georgia Tech Information Security Center about how malicious viruses can be spread through online videos. That’s right. No longer will you need to worry only about viruses being spread through zip files, jpeg/gif images, or documents sent by e-mail or downloaded off of the Internet. Viruses can be transmitted practically through any medium imaginable and it only shows that we’ll need to be more cautious with what we download. Update your virus scanners and get some software that will scan your computer for spyware and adware.

The article also goes on to say that downloading files is not the only way for viruses to spread. Shockingly, simply going to a site like YouTube can result in getting a malicious worm. According to the article…

One worm discovered in November 2006 launches a corrupt Web site without prompting after a user opens a media file in a player. Another program silently installs spyware when a video file is opened. Attackers have also tried to spread fake video links via postings on YouTube.

Fortunately, with new scares come somewhat comprehensive countermeasures to combat this new web terror. The article concludes by saying that validation standards will be tightened and obviously new programs will be developed to scan for these harmful viruses.

Read the full article here.

By Ken Yeung

Ken Yeung is a journalist fascinated with the stories of the tech industry and internet culture. He's currently the Technology Editor at Flipboard, where he observes what's happening in the space while also identifying new topics of interest. In addition, he co-hosts the weekly internet show "The Created Economy," which focuses on what's happening to creators and influencers. Previously, he was a reporter for VentureBeat and The Next Web, covering tech startups, the industry's innovations and funding. Ken also has a newsletter you should also subscribe to called "Filed."