Worm variants keep on coming

Users coming back to work after a weekend away will find yet more viruses clogging their inboxes today: security firms are warning that more variants on the Bagle and Netsky worms are spreading across the globe.

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By  Peter Branton Published  March 28, 2004

Users coming back to work after a weekend away will find yet more viruses clogging their inboxes today: security firms are warning that more variants on the Bagle and Netsky worms are spreading across the globe. The Bagle worm has now nearly completed the alphabet in terms of variants with Bagle-U making an appearance at the end of last week. Bagle-U has no subject line or message body and the infected attachment has a randomly-generated name. Once the attachment is launched, the worm opens Microsoft’s Hearts game on the infected PC. More worryingly, the worm is able to open a backdoor on infected computers, allowing hackers to gain access to the PC. “The Bagle variants just keep on coming,” said Carole Theriault, security consultant at Sophos. “By opening a backdoor, this latest version compromises an infected user’s confidentiality, while potentially turning the computer into a zombie for hackers to use.” As if the prospect of having your PC turned into a card-playing zombie wasn’t bad enough, security firms are warning that Netsky.P is also gaining momentum. Within four days of the worm’s appearance last week MessageLabs had intercepted 3.8 million copies of it, the company said.

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