All of a sudden, malware is making flying the friendly skies seem not so friendly anymore. Last week we learned that a malware infected mainframe may have doomed an Spanish airliner, and now Symantec tells us that some airport terminals are muddled with malicious code.
These public terminals are used by passengers without their own laptops to hop online and surf the Web or check email, but don't assume you're surfing a safe connection.
"In a large airport in England, we noticed one terminal with an usual 'Defense Installer' dialog box," Symantec explains. "'Defense Center Installer' is a fake anti-virus software, also known as 'scareware.'"
This common bit of malicious code dupes users into buying seemingly legit AV software and tries to uninstall the real deal that you may have already installed. Symantec says it's troubling to find these pop-ups on airport terminals.
"While this particular 'scareware' will only infect the Internet terminal, it is an indicator that these terminals are inadequately protected and vulnerable to a full range of malware," Symantec warns. "As an example of potential threats consider that a keylogger on one of these terminals could capture a person's username and password for their airline account, bank account, webmail, social media account, or any other private account used on the terminal potentially compromising those accounts."
As with an public PC, think twice before logging into any private accounts.