New Sex Worm spreads like it's 1999

Mike Halsey MVP
Sep 10, 2010
Updated • Dec 3, 2012

Ten years ago where were worms like Kournikova and I Love You that were infecting computers worldwide with malware and getting mainstream attention on the news.  In that time operating systems and anti-malware programs have improved but now a new sex worm is making its way around the world according to the BBC.

Some variants of the worm contain a link to a PDF document, this PDF contains malware that opens access to the users' email address book.  It's becoming increasingly common for Adobe's file formats to be used for viruses and malware since increased security in newer versions of Microsoft Windows have made it a much harder target.

The worm will immediately spread by sending a copy of itself to everyone in the users' address book.  It will also attempt to remove or disable any security software on the PC so that it can remain undetected.  Finally it will look for open network links to other computers and attempt to auto-run itself on those machines.

The worm isn't widespread but so far some major corporations have been hit including NASA, Disney and the insurance giant AIG.

Security firm Kaspersky said the new worm has similarities to the now infamous I Love You bug  of ten years ago.  "The difference with those earlier attacks is that the e-mails typically carried the malicious file itself and didn't rely on a link to a downloading site...But the technique used to entice users to click on the attachment or malicious link is the same: offer the user something he wants to see."

As always our advice is to virus check any attachment before you open it, if you even need to open it at all.


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