Feeds

.Net may lead to fewer viruses

But different threats

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Virus Bulletin Antivirus vendors will have to significantly redesign their products in order to address risks of malicious code arising from the release of Microsoft's .Net platform.

The change of computing model to Web services that comes with .Net will almost undoubtedly create fresh infection mechanisms for virus writers to exploit.

In particular .Net will create new files called Common Language Runtime (CLR), which contain executable code known as Microsoft Intermediate Language (MSIL), which vendors agree is not yet addressed by AV products.

Eric Chien, of Symantec, said that the security models to be introduced with .Net, may actually result in a drop of the number of new incidents of malicious code, so the issue is one of different vectors of infection coming into play.

Richard Wang, a virus analyst at Sophos, said the challenge for antivirus developers is to viral code would not need to be in a file, so a .Net virus might contain only something that specifies where malicious code comes from. This means AV protection must, in some way, inspect the remote code.

Viruses that infect .Net binaries, Trojans written in .Net languages and malicious code taking advantages of .Net services are all possible.

Because MSIL is designed as a cross platform language along the lines of the Java model, it might allow "viruses to propagate to operating systems that were previously considered low risk", according to Chien. MSIL can be thought of as a compiler for whatever hardware platform .Net services are running on.

While technically possible, Microsoft has yet to announce a common language runtime for Unix or Linux and viruses written in MSIL and CLR-unaware viruses pose a much lower risk.

The issue of .Net and malicious code is an academic question for now, with widespread use of .Net products and services maybe five years away, but its still interesting the visit the subject because Web services represent the future of IT, at least according to most major vendors.

The jury is still out on whether this represents a more, or less, secure world. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
Reddit users discover iOS malware threat
'Unflod Baby Panda' looks to snatch Apple IDs
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.