Bogus Bad Piggies Chrome Plug-in Infects 80,000 Users

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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Bad Piggies Chrome plug-ins target casual gaming fans

More than 80,000 Google Chrome users who believed that they were getting a free browser-based version of a the Bad Piggies video game have unwittingly installed malware onto their system.

According to Barracuda Labs, the unsuspecting victims downloaded a Chrome plug-in that purported to be the latest title from Angry Birds developer Rovio. However the game is currently unavailable through the browser and instead, users are infected by a rogue plug-in that is granted access to their personal information.

Bad Piggies Chrome Malware

Once installed, the bogus game targeted a number of specific websites, such as MSN, Yahoo, IMDB, eBay and MySpace, and displayed additional advertising when they were visited.

Researchers found eight plug-ins claiming to be the game, each of which had ‘Bad Piggies’ in their description, if not their title. Seven were from the same source,, which claims to be a developer of free Flash games.

However several signs indicated that these plug-ins were malicious. Firstly, a search for whois records proved to be in vain as they were hidden behind whoisguard, something that Barracuda says is very suspicious for a business to do. But the most telling sign was that all seven requested permission to “access your data on all websites”, behaviour that should not be expected from a web-based game.

Users that give a plug-in such permissions run the risk of hackers stealing and selling their email address or credit card information.

Angry Birds has previously been targeted by malware authors and is a common way of infecting the smartphones of users who download the game from unofficial Android stores. The game is one of the most commonly blacklisted functions by enterprises who monitor their employees’ activity on company smartphones and tablets.

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