Feeds

Sobig-F is fastest growing virus ever – official

Outlook grim

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

Sobig-F has taken the record as the world's most rapidly spreading virus to date, according to managed services firm MessageLabs, which stopped more than one million copies of the email-borne nuisance since its first appearance earlier this week.

Sobig.F has surpassed the infamous LoveBug, Klez and Kournikova viruses.

Sobig-F, first detected on 18 August, is the sixth variant issued in the Sobig series and appears to be the most sophisticated to date, according to MessageLabs. All initial copies originated from the US, where the virus is currently most prevalent.

Since the first Sobig virus first appeared on 9 January, MessageLabs has intercepted almost three million copies of the virus' variants. MessageLabs detected all strains of this virus proactively, using its heuristics technology.

The current Sobig virus to email ratio is approximately 1 in 17 and the virus is spreading at such a rate it is expected to continue to stay at high-level status for the next few weeks. However, like past Sobig viruses, the Sobig-F virus has an expiry date and is set to deactivate on 10 September.

Said Mark Sunner, MessageLabs' CTO: "The Sobig virus writer's use of an in-built expiry date indicates that he is committed to inventing new and improved versions. Each variant released so far has exceeded the previous one in growth and impact during the critical initial window of vulnerability."

Sobig is a mass-emailing virus that can spoof the sender's address, fooling the user into believing the email is from a legitimate source and then opening the email. The email often contains the following header: "Subject: Re:details" and the text "Please see the attached file for details." The attachment names may include: your_document.pif, details.pif, your_details.pif, thank_you.pif, movie0045.pifm, document_Fall.pif, application.pif, docment_9446.pif.

Once the virus has infected your machine it attempts to connect to a website to download a backdoor Trojan, leaving your computer vulnerable to security breaches by crackers or other viruses. ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.