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Malware alert

You may have experienced an attempt yesterday to install some malware on your PC after looking at our site? As far as we know only PCs with XP software were vulnerable.

A hacker managed to breach the banner rotation system on Vertikal.Net yesterday and installed a pop-up which activated when a particular banner was shown. It would have told you that you pc was compromised and offered to clean it up for you- possibly asking for a small payment to do so?

We can confirm that the hacked codes (i-frames) have been removed, the security hole firmly plugged and the entire web site checked and double checked, both for any further infiltration and for other potential security holes. The site has also been subjected to a thorough check by Google and been given the all clear.

The breach was made at 12:15 yesterday, we picked it up this morning although the programme had already deactivated itself before we cleared it out and plugged the breach.

Vertikal Comment

Such a breach is not the best way to start the day – thankfully this was a very mild programme and would have only presented itself to a very few visitors and most would have been protected against it. It does serve though to remind you of the importance of good web security, something that we have always prided ourselves on and keeping your computers protection up to date.

What is amazing is how ingenious some of these hackers are, in this case for example the hole was found, and then the malware set up so that it would only affect a random number of visitors – helping prevent a warning being triggered sooner – and then it informed you that you had a problem and would most likely have asked you to pay a small amount to remove it!

After a few hours it moved on in order to prevent it being traced? If only these people would direct their talents to more productive and above-board exploits who knows what they might achieve?

In this case it has actually served us well, reminding us of how important it is to keep right on top of the latest security alerts and to make sure our own computers are properly protected.


We received the following note from Jim NielsOn of Caledonian whih c might be helpful.

FAO The Editor

In reference to your Malware / Trojan on your site, It actually infected my pc this morning, although running an up to date version of McAfee it still managed to activate popups on my desk top.

You could please let your readers know that a great little free program is available which will remove this infection completely, which I did without any problems.

The program is Malwarebytes Anti Malware and is totally free.

Here is the link:

Click on 'Download free version'

Download and install then run a 'quick' scan and follow the on screen prompts.