Hi guys. You might have read my post in which I pleaded for help to remove a deadly virus that FORMATTED MY 80 GB Hard disk. After loosing all my data I started to look for the cause of that bloody virus. Here is what I've found out. According to a research conducted by IDC (posted on Microsoft website):
• 25 percent of the Web sites we accessed offering counterfeit product keys, pirated software, key generators or crack tools attempted to install either malicious software or potentially unwanted software. A significant number of these Web sites attempted to install malicious or unwanted code.
• 11 percent of the key generators and crack tools downloaded from Web sites contained either malicious or potentially unwanted software.
• 59 percent of the key generators and crack tools downloaded from peer-to-peer networks contained either malicious software or potentially unwanted software. A significant amount of malicious or unwanted code was present in the key generators and crack tools.
• The cost of recovering from an incident of malicious software on a single workstation could exceed one thousand dollars (USD). The cost of lost or compromised data could exceed tens of thousands of dollars (USD) per incident. Thus, the cost savings of using pirated software could be eradicated with a single security breach.
• The malicious and unwanted code found is indicative of the shift noted by security professionals in attackers' motivations. Attacks have evolved from hacking for fun to seeking confidential information assets and other malisiouc intent. By offering pirated software, crack tools, and key generators, attackers could lure potential victims.
• There are several methods for obtaining and using counterfeit software, including acquiring counterfeit product keys, obtaining "key generator" programs, and using crack tools to bypass licensing and activation mechanisms. IDC investigated the security risks of visiting the Web sites and peer-to-peer networks that use these methods to distribute counterfeit software.
• Simple Web searches often led to Web sites that offered pirated software, key generators, crack tools, and so on.
NOW you see that torrents (which is a form of peer to peer networking) is just a puddle of malware. So torrents and pirated free software should be avoided.
But I also appericiate the fact that the leagal way of obtaining software is just too damn EXPENSIVE!! Imagine the cost of even the most commonest software. You might have to SELL YOUR MOTORBIKE to obtain a leagal copy of ADOBE PHOTOSHOP!!(it costs 999 US dollars. That is 63936 PKR!!!)
So here are some tips to aviod the tojans and malware in the torrents:
1) First install a relyable ANTI-Virus Software, and a Spyware remover.
2) After downloading a program, make a copy of its directory.
3) Now scan one of the copy for viruses using the anti-virus. It will detect trojans if the setup file has any. The anti virus will then confiscate the setup file.
4) Try to "Clean" the infected files. If the antivirus does not clean the files then restore the files (in case they are quarentined).
5) Now start the setup and install the software. But remember DO NOT RUN THE PROGRAMM!
6) Now go to the directory in which the software is installed and perform a virus scan. Most probably the infected files will now be seprated from the programs crutial files. The anti virus will quarentine them.
7) Now run the program. It is now safe. But if the program does not run, it means the some of the crutial files are infected. You can restore the files from the Quarentine and still use the program, but take my advice: Please do not run such software!!
If you still want to use the program, make sure to keep a back up of your iretriveable data for example digital Pics of any personal events and home made videos etc. in another physical Drive not in other partition of the same drive.
Thanx "executionist" your link was very helpful.