Erin Andrews Peephole Video leads to internet danger

March 16, 2010 Sophos Press Release

IT security and data protection firm Sophos is warning all internet users to be wary of websites claiming to host a controversial nude video of glamorous ESPN reporter Erin Andrews - as hackers, spammers and scammers exploit renewed interest in the story following the imprisonment of Miss Andrews' stalker.

Michael David Barrett was sent to jail for 2.5 years yesterday, after secretly filming the US sports reporter through the peephole of her hotel room door, without her knowledge or consent.

Opportunists and hackers are taking advantage of renewed interest in the peephole video (which is currently the 6th most searched for thing on the web) by creating webpages and links that claim to contain the video, but are really traps designed to infect and scam unsuspecting users.

(Enjoy this video? You can check out more on the SophosLabs YouTube channel and subscribe if you like)

"If you visit a site which claims to contain the Erin Andrews Peephole Video you could be exposing yourself to malware (such as fake anti-virus), spam and other scams," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos. "The scammers are busy at work creating content designed to entrap those who go hunting for sleazy videos."

As well as webpages, scores of uploads have been made to YouTube since yesterday's jail sentence claiming to contain footage from the controversial video.

Typically, when played the YouTube videos will display a message saying that for copyright reasons they cannot show you the video - but instead urge you to click a link to a third party site.

Erin Andrews video on YouTube?

That link to a third party website may simply be designed to drive traffic to a spam page, or lead to a page which asks you to sign-up for a service, take a survey or carry malware.

"If you want to look at naked women, buy yourself an adult magazine or get yourself a girlfriend. If you go hunting for this kind of thing on the internet, don't be surprised if it's not just your mind that ends up corrupted, but your computer too," continued Cluley.

For more information on the threat visit Graham Cluley's blog