Whether you're a fan of Angry Birds or not, chances are you or someone you know is keen to try Bad Piggies
, the latest animal warfare game from Rovio. Some are so eager, it seems, that they're willing to install suspicious Google Chrome plug-ins claiming to let users play the game on their computer for free. You've probably guessed where this is going: these games are not legitimate and, in fact, have the potential to harm your computer.
Security firm Barracuda Networks
tried out several of the fake Bad Piggies Chrome apps, many of which were created by Playook, supposed purveyor of free flash games. Upon installing the app, however, users are prompted to give it permission to "access your data on all websites," a permission about as far removed from a game (or most apps, really) as you can get. Surprise, surprise, the app injects its own ads into several popular websites, including Yahoo, eBay, MSN, IMDB and more. Apparently, over 80,000 users (and counting) have installed the offending apps.
While extra ads are certainly an annoyance, the extensive permissions are far more dangerous, as they potentially allow the app's creator to access sensitive information (credit card numbers, email address, etc.). Suffice it to say, if you've just got to get your Bad Piggies
on, the only safe way to do it is via an iOS or Android device.