TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Computer Virus Writers at War, Security Firm Says

Computer Virus Writers at War, Security Firm Says

News Wire (
Wed, 17 Aug 2005 23:26:04 -0500

Computer worms that have brought down systems around the world in
recent days are starting to attack each other, Finnish software security
firm F-Secure said on Wednesday.

"We seem to have a botwar on our hands," said Mikko Hypponen, chief
research officer at F-Secure.

"There appear to be three different virus-writing gangs turning out
new worms at an alarming rate, as if they were competing to build the
biggest network of infected machines."

Hypponen said in a statement that varieties of three worms -- "Zotob,"
"Bozori" and "IRCbot" -- were still exploiting a gap in Microsoft
Corp.'s Windows 2000 operating system on computers that had not had
the flaw repaired and were not shielded by firewalls.

"The latest variants of Bozori even remove competing viruses like
Zotob from the infected machines," Hypponen said in a statement on the
company's Web site. (

The worms were blamed for major system trouble at some media outlets
and companies in the United States on Tuesday, causing personal
computers to restart repeatedly and potentially making them vulnerable
to attack.

Microsoft and the top computer security companies, Symantec Corp.
and McAfee Inc, said damage to systems on Tuesday had been limited and
was unlikely to cause widespread havoc like that which resulted from
other malicious software such as "SQL Slammer" and "MyDoom."

Copyright 2005 Reuters Limited.

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