[SOLVED] Can you get a virus/malware from streaming a video?

_dawn_chorus_

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Aug 30, 2017
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I always assume the worst of any website outside the mainstream that has video content. Sites like couchtuner and others have lots of ads, but is playing the video itself safe? Or can clicking play pose a risk by itself?
 
A few years ago without the level of security we have now, maybe.
Nowadays, less likely.

Technically speaking, you need to download something to obtain malware, and most internet browsers and OS have security in place to prevent any form of "background" installs without requesting your permission first. Having said that, you only need to click a link to download something - you only need to click a "take me here" link and you'll be clicking a link that is downloading malware.

So whilst technically speaking, you can obtain a virus from anything, likelihood is clicking a play button is less likely to give you malware, but clicking it and it opens a new link or requests you to click something else, that's where you're more likely to pick one up. But clicking any "button" or opening an email, is just as able to infect a PC if proper precautions are not made.
 
Jan 25, 2019
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A few years ago without the level of security we have now, maybe.
Nowadays, less likely.

Technically speaking, you need to download something to obtain malware, and most internet browsers and OS have security in place to prevent any form of "background" installs without requesting your permission first. Having said that, you only need to click a link to download something - you only need to click a "take me here" link and you'll be clicking a link that is downloading malware.

So whilst technically speaking, you can obtain a virus from anything, likelihood is clicking a play button is less likely to give you malware, but clicking it and it opens a new link or requests you to click something else, that's where you're more likely to pick one up. But clicking any "button" or opening an email, is just as able to infect a PC if proper precautions are not made.
Is there any way to stop or avoid those '' viruses'' ads buttons from appearing on the websites?
 
Is there any way to stop or avoid those '' viruses'' ads buttons from appearing on the websites?
Have a good antivirus such as (based on W10 tests):
  • Bitdefender
  • Avast
  • Avira
  • Kaspersky
  • F-Secure SAFE 17
Use AdBlock extensions in your browser.

Practice good internet security:

  • Verify sites before you visit them and stick to trusted websites
  • Don't click on suspicious links
  • Don't partake in illegal activity or downloading
  • A good antivirus should block unsafe sites anyway
  • Run regular virus / malware scans etc.
 
Reactions: zakic.lina
Ublock Origin seems to be a very good pop-up/add blocker...

That will not stop one from clicking on /installing the wrong thing , particularly within a 'deception-prone' website, however...; generally, you can find horror or success stories fairly quickly with a decent Google search about a particular website within a few seconds... (Many streaming sites seem to offer abundant 'click here to download free player', an almost certain infection route to getting something you did not want, assuming you get anything else at all)

(Some good AV/AM products already mentioned above; there is also a Windows Defender browser add-on/extension available as well..)
 

_dawn_chorus_

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Aug 30, 2017
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A few years ago without the level of security we have now, maybe.
Nowadays, less likely.

Technically speaking, you need to download something to obtain malware, and most internet browsers and OS have security in place to prevent any form of "background" installs without requesting your permission first. Having said that, you only need to click a link to download something - you only need to click a "take me here" link and you'll be clicking a link that is downloading malware.

So whilst technically speaking, you can obtain a virus from anything, likelihood is clicking a play button is less likely to give you malware, but clicking it and it opens a new link or requests you to click something else, that's where you're more likely to pick one up. But clicking any "button" or opening an email, is just as able to infect a PC if proper precautions are not made.
Would clicking a Video image that then opens up in a new tab with the video player ready count as a "link" that could execute malicious code?
Also I use Kaspersky and have AdblockUltimate in my firefox. After I closed the window I ran Malwarebytes and got nothing.
 
Jan 25, 2019
21
3
15
0
Have a good antivirus such as (based on W10 tests):
  • Bitdefender
  • Avast
  • Avira
  • Kaspersky
  • F-Secure SAFE 17
Use AdBlock extensions in your browser.

Practice good internet security:

  • Verify sites before you visit them and stick to trusted websites
  • Don't click on suspicious links
  • Don't partake in illegal activity or downloading
  • A good antivirus should block unsafe sites anyway
  • Run regular virus / malware scans etc.
Thank you very much! I'll try this :)
 
Would clicking a Video image that then opens up in a new tab with the video player ready count as a "link" that could execute malicious code?
Also I use Kaspersky and have AdblockUltimate in my firefox. After I closed the window I ran Malwarebytes and got nothing.
Yes it can. Very easily.

Just remember prevention is better than resolution. Malwarebytes free is not a live protection, it only scans when you ask it to, a proper antivirus or paid malwarebytes gives active protection so it prevent infection rather than gets rid of it afterwards.
 

_dawn_chorus_

Notable
Aug 30, 2017
296
0
810
6
Yes it can. Very easily.

Just remember prevention is better than resolution. Malwarebytes free is not a live protection, it only scans when you ask it to, a proper antivirus or paid malwarebytes gives active protection so it prevent infection rather than gets rid of it afterwards.
I do have Kaspersky paid, running and AdBlock Ultimate in my Firefox browser, everything is up to date, everything set to not allow tracking or pop ups and to prompt for any downloads. I use Malwarebytes only when something fishy seems to have happened as a second opinion.

I should be fine with all that right?
 
I do have Kaspersky paid, running and AdBlock Ultimate in my Firefox browser, everything is up to date, everything set to not allow tracking or pop ups and to prompt for any downloads. I use Malwarebytes only when something fishy seems to have happened as a second opinion.

I should be fine with all that right?
Yes.

As long as you don't run both scans at the same time.
 

digitalgriffin

Distinguished
Jan 29, 2008
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I always assume the worst of any website outside the mainstream that has video content. Sites like couchtuner and others have lots of ads, but is playing the video itself safe? Or can clicking play pose a risk by itself?
Is it possible? Yes. Likely no.

For example, simply download a malformed webpage font from the web a year or two back could get you infected. (https://googleprojectzero.blogspot.com/2015/07/one-font-vulnerability-to-rule-them-all.html) Even a simple chat program (IRC) which uses text only can get you infected if data is crafted just right.

What would have to happen is there would be a malformed data header targeting a specific codec causing it to crash. This would qualify as a zero day flaw, because once it's discovered it couldn't be used again. The likelihood of that happening though is small to none. It's similar to trying to exploit a .jpg file for a virus. While you could embed bad meta data, if would have to encounter a poorly coded codec to infect you. To date, no image file has been shown to cause infection. (Although some can carry payload commands from an already infected computer. This was a POC only.)
 
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