Posted on January 24, 2018 at 4:49 PM
As the author of the highly controversial new book, Michael Wolff offers an interesting perspective from beyond the white house walls. His portrayal of a ‘mentally unfit’ Donald Trump has caused backlash and praise alike.
Hackers have taken advantage of the popularity of the new book, titled Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House. They see it as an opportunity to cause havoc with widespread malware.
Michael Molsner, the researcher at Kaspersky Labs, was the original finder of the malicious malware. It was on attached to a pirated copy of a PDF version of the book.
He announced his discovery on Twitter Friday, telling his followers that a “strange malware” had been found. The PDF book that Molsner was talking about had a secret file attached. When executed, the file opened a back-door access for hackers to infiltrate the device.
Sometimes we come across strange malware ? 8667949f8fd4ce4da0424af4208104e3 pic.twitter.com/D9l4xu62A6
— micham (@micham) January 19, 2018
If you purchased the book online from big retailers, such as Apple or Amazon, your copy should not be affected. But if you pirated your copy to get it free from an unauthorized seller, it’s likely that the secret malware is attached.
One big tell on whether your copy was affected or not is to check the number of pages. The malware version has 237 pages, while the official book has 328. The malware can also be detected by almost all antivirus programs.
Julian Assange, the owner of WikiLeaks, tweeted a suspicious link early on in January. The link, when clicked, sent the user to a full copy of Fire and Fury. The tweet hasn’t been deleted, but it now leads to a message of error, saying that it was a violation of Google and their terms of service.
This is nothing new. Hackers will often try to infect things regarding trending issues so they can get their malware out as fast and far as possible.
Giovanni Vigna, co-founder of Lastline, released a statement saying that everyone should have a form of anti-virus and tools to prevent anti-malware on their computer. She backed up her point by saying that those tools are really the only way to know if your file is corrupted.
She then addressed the paranoia that people may now feel when downloading PDF books. She assured that hackers do not often use PDF books as ways to spread malware because interest in the run of the mill e-book is often low. But due to the nature of Fire and Fury, copies were selling extremely fast, and hackers took the opportunity.
Fire and Fury’s release on January 5th was just the beginning. The book quickly raised to number one on Amazon and physical copies of the book are all but sold out.
Michael Wolff filled the novel with almost a sleepover gossip quality, offering the interesting insight into what really goes on behind the walls of the white house. Steve Bannon was also quoted multiple times in the book.
The White House has taken every opportunity they could to bash this book; Donald Trump even calling it fake news in a tweet on January 13th.
I’ve had to put up with the Fake News from the first day I announced that I would be running for President. Now I have to put up with a Fake Book, written by a totally discredited author. Ronald Reagan had the same problem and handled it well. So will I!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 7, 2018