Last week, the WordPress Plugin Sharebuttons by Addthis ran into some trouble with ESET, a leading antivirus manufacturer. ESET’s antivirus started reporting that websites were infected with the “TrojanDownloader.Pegel.BH” virus, if they happened to have Sharebuttons by Addthis running on them. The alert was tripped by a call to the webiste “s7.addthis.com” that’s made by the plugin, and that the antivirus saw as an attempt at script injection.
Addthis had a conversation with ESET, and sure enough, ESET confirmed it was a mess up on their part:
The antivirus is incorrectly detecting a Trojan. There’s no virus involved, and no danger to users.
A fix was released for ESET’s antivirus which is being sent automatically to all users. This fix will update the virus definitions and stop the warning from popping up on sites that have Sharebuttons by Addthis. By now, most of the planet should have updated their virus definitions and not have the problem.
What to do if your website has Sharebuttons by Addthis
First thing you should know is that, according to Addthis and ESET, you’re not infected with a virus and there’s no threat to your website. It’s just a bug in the antivirus software. So it’s up to you: you can safely keep using the plugin on your website, if you like.
That’s great to know… but… in my case it doesn’t really help much. When you consider there’s still lots of users out there with an outdated antivirus definition, that means website visitors are still going to get the message every once in a while, and I’ll be hit with tons of support calls from scared users! And of course, if their firewall is using ESET’s definitions and isn’t updated, your site might get blacklisted on corporate networks and that’s not good.
Personally, I think I’ll wait a while. I don’t really fancy scaring the crap out of my users if their antivirus files are outdated. So I’ve pulled the Sharebuttons plugin from my websites. And I plan to keep it off the websites for a week or two, at least until most users have updated their ESET Antivirus definitions, and we can go back to normal.
Sure hope this thing gets back to normal quickly. Sharebuttons by Addthis is a really cool plugin, and works really well! I hate to have to keep it off my sites, even for just a few days!