Feeds

New Windows virus attacks PHP, HTML, and ASP scripts

Virut gets around

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Researchers have identified a new strain of malware that can spread rapidly from machine to machine using a variety of infection techniques, including the poisoning of webservers, which then go on to contaminate visitors.

The malware is a variation of a rapidly mutating virus alternately known as Virut and Virux. It has long proved adept at injecting itself into executable files, which are then able to attack uninfected machines through network drives and USB sticks.

The variant, which Microsoft is calling Virus:Win32/Virus.BM, is also able to infect web scripts based on languages such as PHP, ASP, and HTML. Servers that become infected include an iframe in webpages that attempt to spread malware to visitors.

"This catapults the possibility of spreading even farther," Trend Micro researchers warn. "If the script files happen to be uploaded to a publicly accessible website, any visitor to the affected sites will be led to the URL embedded in the iframe code."

The iframe surreptitiously directs visitors to zief.pl (don't visit it unless you're a security professional), which attempts to exploit a variety of vulnerabilities based on the browser and other applications the user has installed, Microsoft researchers say. Once installed, the virus injects its code into various system processes such as explorer.exe and winlogon.exe and hooks low-level Windows APIs to ensure it stays in memory.

Websense Senior Virus Researcher Nicolas Brulez has also drawn up this detailed analysis of virut.

The virus has also picked up some new polymorphic tricks designed to make it harder for anti-virus programs to detect. Among other things, it uses more than one layer of encryption, allowing its binary fingerprint to change but to preserve its malicious payload.

Infected machines will have an IRC backdoor installed that tries to connect to several servers using port 80. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Jihadi terrorists DIDN'T encrypt their comms 'cos of Snowden leaks
Intel bods' analysis concludes 'no significant change' after whistle was blown
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
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.