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NetSky-Q worm targets Kazaa and eDonkey

Virus du jour has DDoS payload

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NetSky-Q, the latest worm in the ever-expanding NetSky series, is programmed to launch a DDoS on sites run by popular file-sharing services such as KaZaA and eDonkey from infected Windows PCs.

NetSky-Q exploits the Microsoft iFrame vulnerability to execute itself automatically on vulnerable machines. The flaw, now three years old, can be patched by following links in Microsoft's bulletin here.

After execution, NetSky-Q emails itself out as a .zip or .pif attachment with a subject header referring to mail delivery problems, as with many of the 16 previous versions of the worm.

On March 30, NetSky-Q is programmed to cause infected machines to emit beeps of random pitch and duration. Most AV vendors rate NetSky-Q as medium-risk.

NetSky-Q includes a message from the virus authors embedded within its code. Calling themselves the "SkyNet Antivirus Team" from Russia, these unknown VXers claim they are educating users, and want to prevent hacking and sharing of illegal content. "We don't have any criminal inspirations," states the message. Circumstances suggest NetSky-Q was written by a second group using source code released by the original author of the virus after he decided to quit.

Between 7 and 12 April 2004 NetSky-Q-infected computers will perform a Distributed Denial-of-Service attack against sites including www.kazaa.com, www.edonkey2000.com, www.cracks.st, www.cracks.am and www.emule-project.net.

Standard defensive precautions apply: update anti-virus signature files and (if you're an admin) consider introducing controls to block executables at the gateway. If you're a regular user, be careful of those unsolicited attachments, even from people you know. ®

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