Feeds

And now we are One. Many unhappy returns to SoBig

Done too much, much too young

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Today is the first anniverary of Sobig, the worm family which produced such misery for email users last year.

Sobig-A, like its successors, featured a combination of spamming and virus-writing techniques. As well as infecting hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide, Sobig-A installed open proxies on compromised machines, creating an ideal platform for the anonymous dissemination of spam.

To date, email filtering firm MessageLabs has intercepted 737,125 copies in 183 countries; and the worm continues to spread. Despite a built-in expiry date, some infected PCs have incorrectly set system clocks. These machines therefore continue to spew out fresh copies of the malicious code.

Sobig-A's 'success' motivated its unknown author(s) into creating subsequent versions. These 'efforts' led the creation of Sobig-F, the most prolific virus to date. MessageLabs has blocked a staggering 32,899,165 copies of Sobig-F.

The Sobig family has also served as the model for other viruses using convergence techniques, such as the Fizzer worm.

Sobig has altered the viral landscape, acording to Mark Sunner, CTO at MessageLabs. "Sobig-A and its successors represent one of the most significant shifts in virus writing techniques to date. While the line between virus writers and spammers was once drawn clearly, this new generation of viruses is fast eroding that distinction," he said.

"The success of Sobig has served as an inspiration to cyber criminals, and demonstrates what can be achieved when they work together," he added. ®

Related Stories

Sobig-F is fastest growing virus ever - official
Dangerous Mimail variant knocks over anti-spam sites
Phishing and viral tech combines in new menace
Telia blocks spam-sending Zombie PCs
Sobig-F blamed for massive increase in spam
Mafia recruiting spammers, crackers, AV chief warns

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Jihadi terrorists DIDN'T encrypt their comms 'cos of Snowden leaks
Intel bods' analysis concludes 'no significant change' after whistle was blown
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
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.