Opasoft targets Windows systems

Monday, 7 October 2002, 12:38 AM EST

A new worm that targets machines running Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 95, 98, and ME operating systems is spreading, according to virus alerts posted by several leading antivirus software makers. Named "Opasoft", "W32/Opasoft" or "Opaserv," the new virus takes advantage of a common Windows application program interface (API) and loose security practices to spread over local and wide-area networks.

Unlike other worms that spread from computer to computer over the Internet by way of infected e-mail messages, Opasoft takes advantage of the Network Basic Input/Output System (NETBIOS), an API containing functions used to send and receive data over Microsoft networks, according to the announcements.

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