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PC Tools warns of growing online threats

Company says cyber-criminals are taking advantage of social networking

PC Tools warns of growing online threats
PC Tools has warned of the increasingly sophisticated threats on social networking.

Online security company PC Tools has predicted three top new threats that have emerged as a result of new social media sites and features.

The security company said that consumers of social media should watch out for; email alerts for tagged or facial-recognised photos directing to malicious sites, fake invites to new groups or sites and more sophisticated online bots on social networking sites.

According to PC Tools, cyber-criminals may be using tagging photos and videos on social networks as a tactic to get users to click on malicious links asking for information, and users may even be prompted to click on a link leading to a fake login and password entry form, posing as the social network.

Social network users should also watch out for more sophisticated bots, which can create human-looking profiles on social networking sites and then spread malware, spyware and scams through social network sites.

PC Tools also warned that criminals are taking advantage of new social networks being launched, or new features being added,  by creating fake invites to groups or features. When users click on these links, they are open to identity theft.

"If you're looking to join the hottest new social network, be careful where you click-your personal life may be at risk," said Mike Chen, product marketing manager at PC Tools. "Cybercriminals are taking advantage of the buzz surrounding these new social networks and features by tricking unsuspecting users to divulge personal information or download malware."

According to Chen, today's malware may look legitimate to online users, but a harmless seeming email or link could result in a user's identity or credit card data being stolen.

PC Tools' technology is designed to detect and block malware and alert users to websites that might host web threats.

PC Tools Spyware Doctor with AntiVirus 2011 is designed to defend your computer with multiple layers of protection and Internet Security 2011 is designed to block new threats faster than traditional security products, while Browser Defender protects against web-based attacks like phishing attempts and malicious downloads.

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