Google 'malware' sponsored advert delivers fake anti-virus

Filed Under: Google, Malware, Video

Google logo
"Be careful what you ask for - you might get it."

That's the thought running through my head today after I searched for the word "malware" on Google.

As you'll see in the following short YouTube video I made, a sponsored link right at the top of the Google search results points to a fake anti-virus website posing as a legitimate security company:

(Enjoy this video? You can check out more on the SophosLabs YouTube channel and subscribe if you like)

If you download the fake anti-virus program promoted on the website you risk infection by malware identified by Sophos as Troj/FakeAV-AOV.

We've informed Google about this latest example of malvertising, and hopefully it will be zapped from their database of sponsored links shortly.

However, this is far from the only malicious advert or dangerous search result out there - and it's not just Google which can serve up these kind of poisonous links. Make sure you have your wits about you, and have kept your security software up-to-date.

Hat-tip: Thanks to Clu-blog reader Kimberly for bringing this malicious advert to my attention.

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog at, and is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Follow him on Twitter at @gcluley