Sunbelt Blog is a really fascinating blog for anyone who works in the internet industry. As an affiliate I find it a really fascinating blog since the kind of people who produce malware and so on also are often affiliates. In the early days of running my own site I promoted a company who produced a software that when installed on someone's computer replaced ads on any site with their own ads. If someone came to my site, used my bandwidth, read my content they wouldn't see my adverts and wouldn't earn me a penny if they had installed any of this company's software. The company was called Gator and is now called Claria and have been through a number of legal cases on this which means what they do is legal although distasteful to me.
Anyway something that is very common in the malware industry is to get someone to install a piece of software that does something to your PC in order to get hold of a pornographic video or some other slightly illicit goody. They may hide the fact this download is making you part of a botnet but in the latest example shown on the sunbelt blog they get you to download google pack. The 2 incredible parts of this is that the Google affiliate program is paying more than malware pays and that what appears to be a relatively experienced naughty group would risk attacking an affiliate program. Usually these programs are on top of their affiliates enough that they would catch this, stop it and would simply not pay the affiliate. I wonder why Google appeared an easy target. Was the payout big enough to be interesting, the conversion to Google pack so great that it was worth doing or does Google not have a great affiliate fraud monitoring system in place yet?