In view of extremely rapid spread of two very destructive viruses - we replace regular article with this virus alert - specially what you should do to safeguard your system
Threat from two recent viruses that are going around is very real. They mostly affect people who use Microsoft's Outlook Express.
There is a outbreak of computers infected with W32/Goner@MM, also known as Pentagone, Goner or Gone. This is a NEW, HIGH RISK virus that spreads via Microsoft Outlook email and ICQ instant messaging programs. This mass-mailing worm will arrive from someone you know with the following email message:
Goner is extremely destructive. When the attachment is opened, it will look for a variety of anti-virus, firewall and other security programs and attempt to delete them, along with ALL FILES in the same directory. This worm will also place a trojan, REMOTE32.INI, on the system, which contains instructions to attempt Denial-of-Service attacks on other IRC users.
Over past two weeks, I have received hundreds of blank emails of size 40.4 Kb. The emails have a _ character before the sender's email address. I am sure many of you have experienced the same. It means the sender's computers is infected, though he/she may be blissfully unaware. What's worse, may be you are also sending the same virus-laced mails to others if your computer is infected.
It is a new virus called W32/Badtrans@MM
Badtrans is a potentially destructive new generation virus called blended threats. Blended threats are amalgamations of worms, viruses and trojans.
What is a Trojan ?
A trojan, like the Horse of Troy in Greek Mythology, surreptitiously enters your computer and opens the gate for a hacker to get into your computer and steal private information. It also tracks your key-strokes (i.e. your password, credit card number etc. as you type in keyboard) and faithfully conveys to its master.
The best way to safeguard yourself is to never open a file attachment unless you are confident about its origin. However, there are a few viruses that can spread through e-mails WITHOUT attachment or through Chat or Instant messenger.
You should have a good anti-virus software with latest virus definition and preferably a firewall. You should also install e-mail scanner that comes with standard anti-virus software.
Following free and priced resources will help you detect and remove virus from your computer and keep you up-to-date on virus and other security threats.
Priced Anti Virus Software:
Free Resources in the Net
online virus scanning
- Newsletter on Business Opportunties from India and Abroad
Vol II, Issue 27'
December 12' 2001