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Beware Trojans Hidden in Infected Videos

It’s hard enough trying to protect your PC from infected websites and malicious email attachments.

Unfortunately, the list of ways that hackers can sneak their malware onto a PC goes on and on, meaning you have to be more vigilant for all ‘infect vectors’ as they are called by security researchers.

One of the latest infection routes is surprising to say the least. Hackers have apparently managed to hide their malware infections in the subtitles of online videos.

With more and more people using their PC to watch videos, this is a problem.

If you download and watch a video that has infected subtitles, your PC will be infected and the hackers will be able to take over your system.

When you’ve sat down to enjoy the latest movie or episode of your favourite TV programme, that’s the last thing you want.

And quite a few media players and devices are at risk, including VLC, Kodi, Popcorn Time and Stremio.

Fortunately, VLC and Stremio have managed to issue fixes already that protect against the problem but there may well be other undiscovered problems in other media players that could cause the same problem, so beware.

Even scanning your downloaded video file won’t uncover the problem.

That’s because media players are able to download subtitles from an online repository when they need them, such as The hackers have found a way to manipulate the repositories’ raking algorithms so that you automatically download the infected version.

And this isn’t the first time this kind of problem has happened. Back in 2003, hackers managed to carry out an attack that hid Trojans in subtitles.

It seems that the media player developers forgot about the risk in the meantime.

So if you watch films on your PC, I recommend you use the latest version of VLC player to do so, which is now protected against the problem.

What’s more, VLC has support for practically every video format under the sun, so there should be no problems playing any file you want.