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Comes Another Under Cover

While the whole world waited for the Kama Sutra shoe to drop, the virus writers outflanked them with new attacks.

3 February Nyxem aka Kama Sutra was supposed to hit - and destroy files helter skelter on Windows PCs across the planet. And reports say as many as 80,000 were hit in India where allegiance to Bill's Windows is high. But the real story was how other virus writers used this distraction to sneak in new attacks.

As a result, three Russian stock markets - the FORTS derivatives market, the Classic, and the T+0 market - broke down, the damage caused by a single infected Windows PC [sic] creating, in effect, a denial of service attack. Trading halted for over one hour until the culprit box could be identified and taken offline.

Meanwhile, several new variants of Bagle have been caught in the wild by Danish security corp Softscan. According to their communications manager, the attack was well planned to synchronise with the Nyxem alert.

'From previous experience it is evident that someone is trying to target widespread infections of Bagle whilst everyone's attention is diverted to Nyxem', said Bo Engelbrechtsen.

'Taking advantage of users concentrating on avoiding one infection, only to be caught out by another, seems to be the speciality.'

Graham Clueless of Sophos crawled farther out on a limb than he's ever done before.

'A virus which can disrupt a stock exchange can have obvious financial consequences, as well as harm the important credibility of an institution in the public's eye, and this should act as a wake-up call for any business which is not taking the virus threat seriously.'

Which sounds like it's time to leave Windows. For in the World of Windows, if it isn't one thing it's another, and if it's nothing at all it's everything at once.

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