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Rootkit unearthed in network security software

Hidden process developer linked to Sony USB fiasco

Security for virtualized datacentres

Researchers have unearthed rootkit-like functionality in an enterprise security product.

Network security software from a Chinese developer includes processes deliberately hidden from a user and, even worse, a hidden directory, Trend Micro reports. Files in the hidden directory could exist below the radar of antivirus scanners, potentially creating a stealthy hiding place for computer viruses that their creators might seek to exploit.

Trend Micro has written to the software developers involved in what looks like a case of misguided software design, rather than anything worse. Pending a fix from software developers, Trend Micro has slapped a "hacking tool" warning on the rootkit-like component of the network security tool (called HKTL-BRUDEVIC).

It doesn't name the developers except to say they are the same firm which bundles rootkit-like software with USB storage devices featuring fingerprint authentication.

Sony got a further black eye from issues with its MicroVault USM-F fingerprint reader software last year, which emerged a little over two years after its thorough mauling for including rootkit functionality on its music CDs. The feature, designed to stop fans ripping music tracks, created a security hole exploited by a number of Trojans. ®

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