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Ip Addresses In Hosts File

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#1 dazedandconfused


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Posted 19 June 2008 - 01:19 PM

I wasn't sure where to post this, so please feel free to move it if appropriate.

I have Vista Home Premier and have Norton Internet Security on it. I just ran the "Security Inspector" module - and it came back with a message stating: IP addresses in Host file have been redirected - and it then gives me the option to "FIX."

I don't really understand the message, haven't deliberately done anything to the Hosts file, and am I bit apprehensive about doing a "FIX" on something I don't understand.

Can you tell me what might have caused this, or what I can check to see what it's talking about? Does the Host file come with the system, or is it built on-the-fly when I load applications, or ?? I am also using Spybot S&D and updating it and scanning weekly, as well as keeping Norton up-to-date and doing weekly scans.

Any information will be greatly appreciated, 'cause this is beyond my level of "barely adequate" knowledge. :huh:


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#2 Juha


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Posted 19 June 2008 - 01:43 PM

Norton seems to be alerting you to a program (in this case probably Spybot S&D), but could have been a malware, changing your default Windows Hosts file.

A Hosts file can be used for malicious re-directs by malware. But in this case, Spybot S&D (the Good Guy) is adding advertising and malicious sites to your Hosts file and redirects them to an IP address of (your own computer), thus blocking any connection to these bad sites.

Hopefully no need to worry about.

#3 usasma


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Posted 19 June 2008 - 04:09 PM

Here's a link to an explanation about the hosts file: http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.htm

The hosts file is a file that comes with Windows and enables you to specify the actions for certain websites. For example, if you didn't want someone to go to www.xyz.com, you'd put it in your hosts file and redirect it to (which doesn't go anywhere). It can also be used to bypass the need to look up web addresses on a web server by translating the web address (www.xyz.com) to the actual IP address of the website.

On the bad side, malware can attack your hosts file and change the entries so that you go to the websites that they want you to go to. For example, they can redirect your bank page to their website (that's been designed to look like the bank page) where they can steal your information when you input it.

I use the MVPS Hosts file to prevent certain websites from being visited. Along with the standard list that they provide, I use this free program ( http://www.abelhadigital.com/2007/12/hosts...5-released.html ) to manage and add other websites that behave in an offending manner.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

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