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New Malware Fakes Google Home Page

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A couple of very obvious tipoffs should make it apparent to regular Google visitors that a malicious version of the search engine’s home page has been substituted for the real thing.

In the Trend Micro report about malware causing redirections to a fake Google homepage, researchers included a screenshot of that page. A couple of things stand out immediately.

The malicious page tells the victim they need to let an add-on install itself to make Google run properly; helpfully, it offers a click here to download link. No add-on has ever been needed to enable Google’s sparse home page to function correctly.

The other telltale sign of fakery should be recognized immediately by our readers. At the top of the fake page, there is a text link that reads, “Advertise on this page.”

Google has never allowed homepage advertising, and it’s a pretty safe bet they won’t do so in the immediate future. If Google were to permit it, the top right section of Google.com could be the most valuable piece of advertising space on the Internet.

We can imagine several things happening if Google allowed ads on its main destination page. One, ex-Piper Jaffray analyst Safa Rashtchy would un-retire so fast to slap a four-digit price target on shares of GOOG, he’d leave scorch marks in concrete.

Two, Google CEO Eric Schmidt would step up his white-hot pace of selling Google shares to a speed that would require a reworking of several branches of physics.

And finally, Jim Cramer’s head would explode into a fine red mist on live television.

Lots of folks should be glad Google doesn’t allow ads on its homepage. For one thing, it’ll be easier to spot the malware-driven version if it’s on a PC.

New Malware Fakes Google Home Page
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