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Zafi tops viral charts in placid June

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The nasty Zafi-B worm displaced Sasser and NetSky variants as the single most annoying virus last month. The worm, which spreads by email and over P2P file sharing networks, accounted for almost a third of all viruses spotted by anti-virus firm Sophos in June.

The variety of social engineering tricks used by Zafi-B accounts for its relative success, according to Sophos. Emails infected with Zafi-B appear appended to text messages in many different languages, a factor that may have induced many, used to English-language only worms, into opening Zafi's infectious attachment.

Sophos analysed and protected against 677 new viruses in June. It now protects against 91,488 viruses. More than seven per cent of emails circulating last month contained a virus, it says.

A monthly virus analysis from Trend Micro tells a similar story. Like Sophos, Trend reckons that Zafi-B was the worst virus last month. NetSky variants occupy eight of the top 10 places in Trend's chart and six of the top 10 places in Sophos's chart.

June 2004 was a quiet month for new viruses, according to Trend's David Kopp. "This month Trend Micro detected around 950 new malicious codes (computer worms, viruses, Trojans and other malware). This is fewer than last month and June was the first month this year that Trend Micro did not declared a virus alert. However, the effects of the high levels of activity seen earlier this year are still rife and variants of the NetSky worm still represent eight of the top ten threats seen in EMEA," he said. ®

Top ten viruses in June 2004, according to Sophos

  1. Zafi-B
  2. NetSky-P
  3. Sasser
  4. NetSky-D
  5. NetSky-Z
  6. NetSky-B
  7. Bagle-AA
  8. NetSky-Q
  9. Sober-G
  10. NetSky-C

Related stories

Zafi-b speaks in many tongues
Virus attacks mobiles via Bluetooth
CERT recommends anything but IE
UK.biz complacent over virus threats
Viruses up - or down
NetSky tops virus charts by a country mile

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