Feeds

Malware poses as CNN news alert

Headline alert

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Virus writers have created a worm which poses as breaking news alerts. Crowt-A's subject line and attachment share the same name, but continually change to mirror the front-page headline on CNN's website. The message text is also lifted from CNN as part of a social engineering technique designed to trick users into believing infected emails are pukka.

Windows users induced into clicking on the infected attachment surrender control of their PCs to crackers. Crowt-A installs a keylogger which captures sensitive data, such as online banking login details, and forwards it to attackers. Infected machines are also turned into relay stations for the worm, spewing copies of it to email addresses harvested from infected PCs. Few instances of the worm have been spotted thus far. Crowt-A is noteworthy in marking an evolution of social engineering tricks, rather than for the relatively low risk it poses.

"Virus writers are always looking for new tricks to entice innocent computer users into running their malicious code; this latest ploy feeds on people's desire for the latest news," said Carole Theriault, security consultant at Sophos. "Many people subscribe to legitimate email news updates, but the message is simple - businesses need to makes sure their anti-virus detection is constantly updated and users need to be suspicious of all unsolicited email whether it's promising celebrity pictures or news updates." ®

Related stories

Worm poses as porn-purging program
VXers hit new low with tsunami-themed worm
Worm plays Tetris with victims
Porn diallers and Trojans the new face of malicious code
Gadzooks! My PC has the pox

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
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.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.