Feeds

Police hold three in spam Trojan bust

'MOOP' members cuffed in UK and Finland

Security for virtualized datacentres

Police in Finland and the UK this morning arrested three alleged members of a group dubbed "MOOP" suspected of delivering trojans via spam emails to gain access to confidential information stored on "thousands" of corporate machines, the Metropolitan Police's Computer Crime Unit has confirmed.

The three men, a 63-year-old from England, a 19-year-old from Finland and a 28-year-old from Scotland, are being questioned after computers were "seized at residential addresses in both countries in addition to the suspects' servers".

A Metropolitan Police statement reads: "This highly organised group are suspected of writing new computer viruses in order to avoid detection by anti-virus products. They have been primarily targeting UK businesses since at least 2005, and during this time thousands of computers are known to have been infected across the globe."

Detective Constable Bob Burls, of the Metropolitan Police Computer Crime Unit, added: "These men appear to be connected via an online company. We believe the suspects created and adapted viruses with the aim of causing massive infection by spamming. Today's arrests will send a clear worldwide signal to the authors of malicious software that national borders will not limit the ability and commitment of law enforcement authorities to clamp down on this criminal activity."

The virus in question is, according to CNet, called either "Ryknos", "Breplibot" or "Stinkx", and is delivered when unsuspecting users click on an attachment to an email which reads:

"Hello, Your photograph was forwarded to us as part of an article we are publishing for our December edition of Total Business Monthly. Can you check over the format and get back to us with your approval or any changes? If the picture is not to your liking then please send a preferred one. We have attached the photo with the article here. Kind regards, Jamie Andrews."

The "Breplibot" virus has previously been fingered for exploiting Sony-BMG's infamous rootkit DRM technology, and was delivered via a similar email.

The rootkit masked any files beginning with "$sys$", and Breplibot accordingly used this handy facility to drop the file "$sys$drv.exe" into the Windows system directory safe from the prying eyes of anti-virus software. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
NASTY SSL 3.0 vuln to be revealed soon – sources (Update: It's POODLE)
So nasty no one's even whispering until patch is out
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Forget passwords, let's use SELFIES, says Obama's cyber tsar
Michael Daniel wants to kill passwords dead
FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones
Claims it's what the Founding Fathers would have wanted – catching killers and pedos
Kill off SSL 3.0 NOW: HTTPS savaged by vicious POODLE
Pull it out ASAP, it is SWISS CHEESE
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
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?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.