Thursday, February 02, 2006

Speaking of Viruses

Watch out for Kama Sutra this Friday February 3 and the third of every month henceforth. A new malicious worm called by various names like Nyxem, Mywife, Work–Grew A, Kama Sutra and Blackworm could begin infecting your computer system.The mass-mailing worm, which uses its own SMTP engine, sends copies of itself as e-mail attachments to addresses collected from the infected computers. The mails use social engineering techniques such as promise of pornographic pictures to entice users to open the attachment.It also propagates itself through network shares, including popular P2P file sharing services.

The virus gets under the radar of anti-virus software because of unique extensions: .b64, .bhx, .hqx, .uu, .uue, .mim. The worm has been in circulation since mid-January and many are unaware of its infection status. The virus targets popular file formats including .DOC, .XLS, .PPT, .PDF, and .ZIP. In addition to losing data, this virus also renders the keyboard and mouse inoperable, thereby leaving the user’s system dead.

Microsoft on Monday posted a security advisory on the worm, but has decided against updating its Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool before the next regularly-scheduled release of February 14.There is good news, though. Since this threat is relatively well-known to the security industry, major security vendors detect this worm and its variants. Whatever antivirus program you are using, (even if it is Norton!) make sure it's up to date and you should be protected.

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