New QuickTime exploit hits MySpace, steals passwords

Trojan exploits a QuickTime bug that Apple has left unfixed since December

A Trojan horse exploiting a flaw in Apple's QuickTime that was patched two weeks ago is infecting MySpace.com users' computers, collecting confidential information, including passwords, several security companies said Monday.

The attack is reminiscent of one late last year that plagued MySpace users and forced the popular social networking site to shut down hundreds of profiles.

Like that December exploit, Monday's leverages the QuickTime "HREF" function, which allows movies to contain URLs or JavaScript that load Web pages into a browser. Rather than issue a fix to all QuickTime users then, however, Apple took the unusual step of letting MySpace itself link to the blocking code. In other words, only MySpace users were protected.

"This function is not strictly a bug or a vulnerability, but it is something that can be misused," said Ivan MacIntlel, research director at Trend Micro.

An Apple spokesman Monday said that the company patched QuickTime against the flaw in its March 5 security update. New versions for both Mac OS X and Windows were released that day.

But apparently not every QuickTime user has updated to the patched Version 7.1.5; the most recent exploit again uses HREF to embed malicious JavaScript in a QuickTime movie posted on a MySpace page. When a user clicks to play the movie, the JavaScript Trojan horse -- which is hosted on an external site -- grabs personal information of the MySpace user.

Helsinki-based security vendor F-Secure ticked off the pieces the Trojan horse steals: MySpace username, FriendID, MySpace Display Name and other user passwords. The data is uploaded to a server at the domain Profileawareness.com, which is a members-only forum that "provides working methods of tracking exactly who visited your MySpace profile."

Although MacIntlel could not confirm that the QuickTime update of March 5 would stymie the new attack -- his research teams are still investigating -- he said that it is often true that people don't upgrade vulnerable software. "It's common that people aren't updating right away," he said.

MySpace representatives did not return a call for comment.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Gregg Keizer

Computerworld
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?