I was reading a Tech Republic article raving about Angry IP Scanner tool. I decided to download it and give it a try.
Angry IP's download links is linked from Tech Republic's own site, as you can see below:
When you visit Angry IP's Web site, a conspicuous banner sporting a large download button is linked by Google Ad Service. As you can see from the image below, it's extremely misleading. It's intended to make you believe that's the download link itself. The 32 and 64 bit executable files in small letters below the banner are the real download links. When I clicked on the banner ad, I was redirected to alwaysdownloads.com.
I became suspicious. I logged in to a virtual machine and decided to proceed with the download to see what would happen. I was led to believe that I was downloading Angry IP Scanner but instead I wound up downloading a bit torrent, a browser add-on and getting my default home page switched to some unknown search engine. The download file came from dl.airdwnlds.com.
Fortunately, I ran this on a sandbox virtual machine and so it did not affect my production system.
The lessons are simple:
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