Feeds

SirCam worm enjoys virus gang bang

Double the fun, double the infection

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Some copies of email attachments infected with the prolific SirCam worm also carry copies of other viruses, security experts have warned.

MessageLabs, a managed services firm that scans its users email for viruses, said it has intercepted more than 100 emails doubly infected emails which have the potential to trip up the disinfection process of antiviral scanners.

Incomplete or botched cleaning could, at least in theory, create modified versions of the SirCam virus that are hard to detect, it warned. This is noteworthy because the bandwidth-hogging, privacy-threatening SirCam worm is on its way to becoming the most common virus ever.

MessageLabs has reported intercepting more than 100 doubly infected files, such as Sircam infected with FunLove, which infects applications in the Windows and Program Files folders; or SirCam infected with Kriz, a polymorphic Windows executable virus.

Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at antivirus vendor Sophos, said the possibility of a "cocktail" of different infections affecting the same executable has been known about for some time and does carry with it a small risk.

"Normally an antivirus scanner will be able to strip off different layers of viruses. But when viruses mate together in a single file they can corrupt themselves," said Cluley.

This is rare but if it happens vendors would need to update their antivirus signatures to detect the hybrid infection or, if appropriate, fix a bug in their own software.

Double infections occur because users have got themselves infected with two viruses, the PC equivalent of contracting both herpes and syphilis. Users can most effectively protect themselves against viruses by practising "safe computing" - that is by regularly updating their antiviral protection and by deleting emails containing suspicious attachments. ®

External Links

Write up on SirCam by Symantec
MessageLabs reports on SirCam

Related Stories

SirCam virus hogs connections with spam
Rise in viruses within emails outpacing growth of email
Symantec fails to stop SirCam
Hotmail fails to block SirCam worm
Magistr continues three month reign as top virus
Users haven't learned any lessons from the Love Bug
Microsoft security fixes infected with FunLove virus

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.