'Fireball' malware infects 5.5M US computers: 5 things to know

Fireball, a browser-hijacking malware, has infected more than 250 million computers worldwide as of June 1, according to a Check Point Software Technologies report.

The high-volume threat operation is run by a Bejing, China-based digital marketing agency, according to Check Point. The malware reportedly manipulates browsers into fake search engines to generate ad-revenue.

Here are 5 things to know.

1. Fireball is primarily spread through bundling, or the coupling of an unwanted malware with a wanted download.

2. Fireball is capable of running malicious code on any computer, but it currently only installs plug-ins and additional configurations to boost ad-revenue, according to Check Point.

3. Fireball's fake search engines reportedly use tracking pixels to harvest users' private information, creating security flaws in targeted machines and networks.

4. The majority of computer infections were seen in India (10.1%), Brazil (9.6%), Mexico (8.4%) and Indonesia (5.2%), according to Check Point.

5. The U.S. has witness roughly 5.5 million infections, encompassing 2.2 percent of computer infections throughout the globe, according to Check Point.

Click here to view the full analysis.

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