LIVE VIDEO: Live Newscast    Watch
 

Malware attack hits thousands of Yahoo users

8:40 AM, Jan 5, 2014   |    comments
In this April 18, 2011 file photo, the Yahoo logo is displayed outside of the offices in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

 


 


(CNN) -- A malware attack hit Yahoo's advertising server over the last few days, affecting thousands of users in various countries, an Internet security firm said.

In a blog post, Fox-IT said Yahoo's servers were releasing an "exploit kit" that exploited vulnerabilities in Java and installed malware.

"Clients visiting yahoo.com received advertisements served by ads.yahoo.com," the internet security firm said. "Some of the advertisements are malicious."

Fox-IT, which is based in the Netherlands, focuses on cyber defense.

It estimates tens of thousands of users were affected per hour.

"Given a typical infection rate of 9%, this would result in around 27,000 infections every hour," the company said. "Based on the same sample, the countries most affected by the exploit kit are Romania, Great Britain and France. At this time it's unclear why those countries are most affected, it is likely due to the configuration of the malicious advertisements on Yahoo."

If a computer infected with malware is connected to a network,attackers can often access other connected systems and servers.

Yahoo said it is aware of the security issues.

"At Yahoo, we take the safety and privacy of our users seriously," it said in a statement Saturday night. "We recently identified an ad designed to spread malware to some of our users. We immediately removed it and will continue to monitor and block any ads being used for this activity."

The security firm said it is unclear who's behind the attack, but it appears to be "financially motivated." It did not provide details.

Its investigation revealed that the earliest sign of infection was on December 30.

Check out some of our most read stories from 2013:

#shortyellows: Florida quietly shortened yellow lights

Terrorism Warning: Memo says terrorists practicing dry-runs on Florida flights

Kittens shot: Officer shoots kittens in front of children

Courtroom apology: Woman apologizes for flipping off judge

Weird ice: Strange, giant circles appear on frozen pond

Controversial Club: College student organizes "White Student Union"

CFO Trouble: School administrative chief in trouble over her porn sex blog

Warning Shot Wife: Mother gets 20 years for firing warning shots at abusive husband

Science Arrest: Teen girl arrested over science project explosion

Wait, WHAT?? Dog shoots man in the leg with a handgun

Popular photo galleries:

Faces of Meth: Devastating before and after photos of meth abusers

Trayvon Martin Shooting: Trayvon Martin crime scene photos and George Zimmerman injury photos 

Hooters Winners: Winners of the 2013 Hooters swimsuit pageant

Rejected: Funny Florida license plates rejected by the DMV***warning graphic***

Deadly sinkhole: Home collapses, man dies in giant sinkhole

Popular Databases:

Florida Sex Offenders: Look up sex offenders in any Florida neighborhood here

Restaurant Inspections: Look up inspection reports for any Florida restaurant here



Most Watched Videos