Site Talk forum: Totally annoying ad...

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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
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Bonehead
Jun 30, 2014 10:44 AM CST
@Dave, I'm not at all opposed to the ads that show up here and there. But, there's one that is totally annoying and I'm hoping you can make this one go away. It is a blurry video of I guess a soccer game that keeps looping nonstop in the background making some sort of cheering noise. Even when I went into the Plant Database, the noise kept coming. Clicking on the 'x' within the ad just triggers some sort of download, and the pause button in the ad doesn't work either. I ended up exiting out of ATP and re-entering to make it go away. Thanks if you can help. Otherwise I'll just hope it doesn't randomly select me again.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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dave
Jun 30, 2014 11:47 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I can block annoying ads but I need the URL they are linking to. Next time you see it, right click on select "Copy link location" and paste it into a tree mail to me.
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
Jun 30, 2014 1:44 PM CST
It followed me to another site, and I'm thinking it might be some icky thing rather than an ad - didn't seem to be promoting anything. I ran my anti-malware/virus program so perhaps that got rid of it. But if it does show up again, I'll try to get the URL. Thanks.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jun 30, 2014 1:52 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Malware will definitely do that!
Name: wayne
memphis (Zone 7b)
Keeper of Poultry Region: Tennessee
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wayne
Jul 3, 2014 3:55 PM CST
Bonehead said:It followed me to another site, and I'm thinking it might be some icky thing rather than an ad - didn't seem to be promoting anything. I ran my anti-malware/virus program so perhaps that got rid of it. But if it does show up again, I'll try to get the URL. Thanks.


short version:

That sounds like a browser hijack. You may want to ensure your system is running the latest versions of adobe shockwave as well as java. It sounds like you are pretty fastidious with your system security, so you should just continue to keep an eye open and things should be fine. While it is possible for any website to be compromised, but I think you're right to assume the problem came from elsewhere. I say that because this particular website seems to be curated at a level that 99.9% of the websites in the world are not.

longer, slightly more nerdy version:

There are a couple of newer threats floating around the internet right now which are particularly nasty if successful. I work in cybersecurity and I spend all day investigating threats on a large network. The behavior you just described sounds quite similar to something we have been seeing recently.

The attack usually happens in three phases - the user performs an innocent google search and lands on a page that has been infected with a line of malicious code. This code causes your web browser to download the second phase of the attack. This phase actually reviews the software installed on your system and identifies any vulnerable software on your system. The common targets are Flash, Shockwave, Acrobat Reader, Java, as well as Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome. Anyway the third phase involves the delivery of the actual malicious code. At that point, the attacker attempts to harvest login information from your browser before disappearing into the night. The amazing thing to me about all this is that even after your computer gets to that third level and is actually infected...the actual theft of data is quite rare due to environmental circumstances (the jerk who wrote the evil code misspelled something, you have a good firewall on your network, you are really bad at networking and route things incorrectly). There are several resources online that track infection rates, but typically it's in that 7-12% range.

As for why I feel confident the problem didn't originate here (not that that was implied...again this is my thing so I jumped in with both feet) is because the compromised websites I see every day are cookie-cutter, out of the box jobs with almost no modifications...this site would take a lot of attention in order to crack.

Well, my first post to ATP I mispelled "lily" in the thread subject. My second post is now a rambling screed against unskilled virus writers. No where to go but up from here :)
[Last edited by wayne - Jul 3, 2014 5:26 PM (+)]
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Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Jul 3, 2014 4:19 PM CST
Thank You! Lovey dubby
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Linda
Tucson, Arizona
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quietyard
Jul 3, 2014 8:55 PM CST
Thank you for the warnings and info Wayne ! Thumbs up
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Name: Glen Ingram
Macleay Is, Qld, Australia (Zone 12a)
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Gleni
Jul 4, 2014 3:27 AM CST
Welcome! Thank You! Wayne.
Name: Carole
Clarksville, TN (Zone 6b)
Cherish today
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SongofJoy
Jul 4, 2014 6:45 AM CST
Great info, Wayne. Thumbs up
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Name: wayne
memphis (Zone 7b)
Keeper of Poultry Region: Tennessee
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wayne
Jul 4, 2014 3:53 PM CST
Thanks everyone, I appreciate your kind words :)

It can be difficult for home users to find good resources when it comes to threats like this. Please feel free to message me if you ever need help finding an answer to a computer security question. That's the least I can offer before I start asking dumb questions about plants!

Hope everyone is having a great 4th.
Name: Linda
Tucson, Arizona
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Morning Glories Region: United States of America Amaryllis Hummingbirder
Region: Southwest Gardening Echinacea Roses Birds Seed Starter Plumerias
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quietyard
Jul 4, 2014 8:13 PM CST
No questions are dumb Wayne ! Smiling We are all learning. Whistling
" And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden" Genesis 2:8
Name: Michele Roth
N.E. Indiana - Zone 5b
I'm always on my way out the door..
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Forum moderator Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Master Level Dog Lover Cottage Gardener
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chelle
Jul 4, 2014 9:18 PM CST
quietyard said:No questions are dumb Wayne ! Smiling We are all learning. Whistling


I agree

Thank You! for sharing your knowledge, Wayne. Thumbs up

Cottage Gardening

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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Jul 5, 2014 5:57 PM CST
wayne said:Thanks everyone, I appreciate your kind words :)

It can be difficult for home users to find good resources when it comes to threats like this. Please feel free to message me if you ever need help finding an answer to a computer security question. That's the least I can offer before I start asking dumb questions about plants!

Hope everyone is having a great 4th.


Thank you, Wayne!! Thumbs up
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Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
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flaflwrgrl
Jul 6, 2014 1:37 PM CST
Thank you for that explanation/information Wayne! Now don't put yourself down by saying you'll be asking dumb questions.
A) I agree with the others sentiment here that no question is dumb except the one not asked.
B) You just offered us a helping hand finding an answer to a computer security question where I'm sure *we* will feel like we're asking the dumb question.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
Laughter is the best medicine!
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Marilyn
Jul 6, 2014 3:33 PM CST
Welcome! Wayne and Thank You! I tip my hat to you. Thumbs up
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