Updated Tainted banner ads are being served up onto the Daily Mail's website.
We passed on a reader tip about a possible infection on DailyMail.co.uk to anti-virus firm Sophos, which confirmed that script served up through the site was redirecting surfers to a server linked to the spread of the strain of the Mario family of worms.
The tainted ads are the work of malicious hackers who somehow succeeded in injecting redirection scripts into banner ads. These malicious scripts generated an iFrame which pulls its content from a malicious server, located in Russia. The site attempts to exploit browser flaws to download malicious code onto unpatched Windows PCs, as part of a classic drive-by-download attack.
Analysis of the attack is ongoing.
We emailed the Daily Mail's website techies, which bounced with a no-such-user error message, but followed up with a call. An advertising sales rep confirmed he'd being informed of the attack, because of the potential impact on ads being served via site. It's unclear how far Associated Newspaper technicians have gone in blocking the attack but at least we know they are on the case. ®
The first version of this story said that the tainted ads were been served up through an ad serving network, as in commonplace in such cases. Actually the malware came from the servers of the publisher of the Mail.