Home Malware Programs Trojans HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen


Posted: May 2, 2014

Threat Metric

Threat Level: 9/10
Infected PCs: 82
First Seen: May 2, 2014
Last Seen: May 22, 2023
OS(es) Affected: Windows

HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen is a generic identification for PDF files with embedded, unsafe content. Frequent perusal of these files by malware experts has led to the conclusion that many such files are used to install threats onto your PC, or are otherwise a component of a threat-related attack. Unlike a normal download, downloads through HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen vulnerabilities may install their software automatically, and launching HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen by mistake should be considered an excellent motive to inspect your PC with anti-malware software without any delay.

HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen: Taking Flash to a Threatening Level of Interactivity

HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen is one of the heuristic labels given to Adobe PDF files that include hostile content. Although HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen's embedded content may have other purposes, previously attack statistics gathered by malware researchers have made it clear that most HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen detections, when accurate, are Trojan droppers. Trojan droppers often are one of the first types of unsafe content encountered in threat-distributing campaigns, and are used to install other threats automatically onto a vulnerable machine.

HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen's distribution may be through spam e-mail attachments, social network links and other methods that almost always disguise the related file as another file entirely (such as a JPG). They also may be embedded in corrupted (or hacked) websites. After its launch, HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen usually will exploit default Adobe Reader vulnerabilities to launch an attack. There often are no visible signs of the attack, although malware experts sometimes see clear indicators related to their payloads, such as the pop-up attacks of rogue security programs.

Minimizing All the Ways a Rotten PDF can Hurt Your Computer

There is more than one way to protect yourself from HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen attacks – and malware experts recommend enacting all of them, when practical. Strong security settings for your browser may help block websites or content related to HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen, anti-malware products should be able to identify HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen on sight, and avoiding clicking on suspicious links or files will keep you from exposing yourself by mistake. Updating your software also can drastically lower, if not completely remove, the vulnerabilities exploited by HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen to infect your machine.

A final way to protect yourself from HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen also is to never install software that could read PDF files. However, these kinds of attacks may include several, redundant methods of achieving their goals, of which HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen only may be one.

On the other hand, any contact with HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen should be considered equivalent to launching HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen, unless anti-malware utilities have explicitly blocked HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen. With the potential for threat installation being extremely high, any detection of HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen always is a reasonable cause for scanning your entire PC, after the fact. Catching and removing threats installed by HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen as soon as possible will minimize any harm that could be caused by HTML/Malicious.PDF.Gen, of which malware experts have seen consequences as small as browser hijacks and as severe as hacked bank accounts.