Virus variants spread
New variants of old viruses are causing headaches for computer users this week. Both MyDoom and Netsky have been altered to continue assaulting vulnerable users.
Despite requiring the computer user to actively run an attachment, Netsky.C seems to be spreading fast, with antivirus vendor Central Command claiming it had discovered 1,500 infections of the virus within 40 minutes of its discovery. Like Netsky.B, the latest virus uses its own SMTP engine to email itself to addresses found on the computer, and copies itself into any folder it finds whose name includes "shar".
UK security company mi2g estimated the economic damage done by Netsky.B worldwide to be at least $3.12bn (£1.66bn). This was calculated "on the basis of helpdesk support costs, overtime payments, contingency outsourcing, loss of business, bandwidth clogging, productivity erosion, management time reallocation, cost of recovery and software upgrades".
By James Pearce at ZDNet.
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- Virus News: Panda Software reports on the new Netsky.C worm (26 February 2004)
- Virus News: Weekly report on viruses and intrusions - Bagle.B, variants A and B of Netsky, Deadhat.C and Mydoom.E-, and a Trojan called Agent.B (23 February 2004)
- Virus News: Netsky-B Worm Spreading Widely (18 February 2004)
- Review: Viruses Revealed (28 April 2003)