JPEG worm breaks new ground

Thursday, 13 June 2002, 10:44 PM EST

Dubbed the first "JPEG infector" by security company Network Associates, the W32/Perrun virus has two parts: infected JPEG images that contain the virus's payload and a viral program that extracts the code from the images and infects other JPEGs on the system as they are opened.

Because PCs have to be infected by the extractor virus before any code hidden in image files can affect them, the program is more a computer-science curiosity than a threat, said Vincent Gullotto, vice president of Network Associates' antivirus emergency response team.

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