Bestpcantivirus targets antivirus vendors
Upon casual inspection, bestpcantivirus.com reviews antivirus solutions for your PC. In their own words:
We recommend you the best antivirus software for your PC. Our reviews and recommendations are balanced from the performance, budget and easy to use. Below are the Top 3 Antivirus programs that will give you the best performance and are Worth The Value You Pay For!
There’s a little more to this site than meets the eye. When you visit each of the pages for the products reviewed, bestpcantivirus.com is invisibly forcing affiliate cookies associated with the product in question onto your machine. The idea is that if you end up buying one of these products further down the road, then Bestpcantivirus will be paid a commission for they claim themselves as the entity responsible for the purchase. This is fine if you clicked through on the appropriate affiliate click links, but that’s not what happens here, i.e., Bestpcantivirus is playing the game unfairly. If you are an affiliate competing for the same traffic then you are going to lose.
Line 43 in the HTML source of this bestpcantivirus page has an IMG tag with a src attribute set to a link which will redirect through to an affiliate click link (CJ affiliate id 5727502) and then onto Norton.
Bestpcantivirus knows what they are doing is wrong, so they set the width and height attributes of this malformed image to 1×1, this way you won’t see it if you are just browsing casually. I dynamically modified the DOM to alter the dimensions of this image to 50×50, the red arrow highlights what is really going on:
As always, if you can’t reproduce this for yourself, this packet trace confirms the activity.
I give this scammer a 2/10:
- 1 point for the most basic form of Cookie-Stuffing
- 1 point for Cookie-Stuffing multiple merchants:
Merchant CJ Affiliate Id AVG 5727502 Eset 3840211 F-Secure 3840211 Kaspersky 5727502 Pandasecurity 5727502 Zonealarm 3840211