Google Chrome users are warned of a new hacking threat that targeted over 20 extensions that were used by over eight million people in total. According to security experts Kaspersky, popular extensions like Frigate Light, Frigate CDN, and SaveFrom have been targeted by bad actors. These Chrome extensions were exploited by hackers to carry out malicious activity, but luckily, they did not target financial information or other sensitive data.
Instead, Kaspersky said the goal of this campaign was to generate traffic for videos on streaming sites in order to increase the number of viewers.
The videos were stealthily playing in the background when a victim started surfing the internet.
But there were a number of tell-tale signs that something was wrong.
One of the main freebies is that Chrome ran slower than usual while playing the video covertly.
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However, the video will not play until a user starts browsing. Therefore, he can only attribute the slowdown to general internet surfing.
Other signs of the scam, according to the makers of the Yandex browser, were occasional background noise from the video.
Kaspersky also said that affected extensions were able to intercept access to a social network, which would likely help increase the number later.
At the time of writing, extensions highlighted by Kaspersky such as Frigate Light and Frigate CDN that were on the Chrome Web Store have been removed from the list.
Discussing the results, Kaspersky said, “If your security solution detects threats in Google Chrome or any other Chromium-based browser, you must first disable the malicious plug-ins as the security application will respond to them.” .
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“If you’re not sure which of the plug-ins is dangerous, disable them one at a time until you find the right ones.
“For its part, Yandex has automatically deactivated a number of extensions in its Yandex.Browser (which is also based on Chromium) and is still looking for other plug-ins that pose a threat.”
While Yandex browser manufacturers added: “We consider the behavior described to be potentially dangerous and unfair. Therefore, we have decided to disable already installed copies of SaveFrom.net, Frigate Light, Frigate CDN and some other extensions in Yandex Browser. Users of this Extensions will do this. ” You will receive a notification letting us know the reasons for the shutdown. After that, they can make an informed decision and turn it back on if necessary (although we strongly recommend not doing that). “