Autopen Hosting


Web Hosting Security

We originally posted an article about web hosting security written by  However, they do not allow non-profit educational organizations to use their articles.  therefore, we will post other informational articles and news about web hosting security.

Free personal web hosting sites are increasingly being exploited by hackers seeking affordable and anonymous ways to store and disseminate mobile malicious code (MMC) and dangerous types of spyware, such as keyloggers, which are designed to steal personal and confidential information.

Since the beginning of 2005, Websense® Security Labs has discovered more than 2,500 incidents of these websites distributing MMC, Trojan horses and keyloggers. Websense software protects organizations from inadvertently becoming victims of these attacks by blocking access to infected sites and preventing harmful spyware applications from running on end-users’ machines.

In the first two weeks of July 2005 alone, more than 500 incidents of free web hosting sites that were created to spread keyloggers, Trojan horse downloaders, Trojan horse droppers, and other harmful spyware and malware. Earlier this year, it was reported that free blogging accounts were being used to harbor malcode—this trend is now expanding to any form of free web hosting site. The recently uncovered sites include those available for hosting online journals, photo albums, greeting cards, music, sports ‘fan’ pages and online sc#@&books, among many other popular purposes.

“The growth of this trend is alarming. July has seen a major boom—in the first two weeks alone we found more instances than in May and June combined,” said Dan Hubbard, senior director of security and technology research for Websense. “Some of the sites may be created with automated shared hacking software and free online tools, while others are built to appear more legitimate. For example, one of the sites found by the Labs included music that accompanied a greeting-card message which runs while your computer is being infected with spyware.”

These fraudulent, free personal websites have an average lifespan of two to four days, making them difficult to trace. In addition, a majority of the new sites discovered by Websense have been hosted in Brazil or the United Kingdom and contain text written in Portuguese and English.

“Hackers create their own pages with the sole purpose of spreading harmful code and combine deception techniques, such as social engineering, to entice users to visit and run the malicious code,” added Hubbard. “To allow accounts to remain free, most of the hosting sites are not providing security features to prevent this anonymous posting of malignant Trojan horses.”