Are viruses more durable? ... New worm offers Iraqi spy photos... Forgotten passwords ... and more from around the web.
The growth of malicious code slowed between July 2001 and the end of
last year, but
new viruses pose a more constant threat and last longer
previous years, according to the Virus Prevalence Survey, conducted by
ICSA Labs, an independent division of TruSecure. The prevalence of mass
mailing viruses and Internet worms account for the increase in durability.
Those virus types are harder to remove, even after virus definitions are
new e-mail worm
is spreading by capitalizing on interest in the war
with Iraq and related issues, British antivirus vendor Sophos warned. Some
e-mails containing the W32/Ganda-A worm contain subject lines and content
designed to entice the user with the promise of Iraqi spy photos,
screensavers expressing patriotic U.S. sentiments or critical of the Bush
administration, and warnings about Nazi propaganda being spread via CD-ROM
to children or over the Internet. The worm spreads by sending itself to
e-mail addresses collected from EML, HTM*, DBX, and WAB files on an
infected computer. It creates two copies of itself in the Windows folder
and it changes the Windows registry so that it loads automatically every
time the computer is started.
The author of this worm and other viruses is likely to be a
14- to 34-year-old male who is more obsessed with computers than courtship
That is the profile of the average computer-virus writer, anti-virus
vendor Sophos said on Tuesday. "They have a chronic lack of girlfriends,
are usually socially inadequate and are drawn compulsively to write
self-replicating codes. Its a form of digital graffiti to them," said Jan
Hruska, the chief executive of Sophos. Hruska said the number of viruses
created would continue to climb in the coming years.
Rocksteady Networks on Wednesday announced the general availability of its
RocksteadyNSA Network Sharing Application
, which allows organizations
to securely share their wired and wireless networks. With the new
application, companies can extend user-specific access to their wired or
wireless networks to employees, partners, consultants and customers
without sacrificing security, performance or usability, the company said
in a statement. "With RocksteadyNSA, users are assigned passports when
they enter the network. These passports determine which areas of the
network they can visit -- ensuring that they dont venture to areas where
they dont belong," said Kerry Grimes, Rocksteady president and CEO.
password comes with a cost.
Forrester Research estimates that password
problems account for 40 percent to 80 percent of all calls to company IT
departments. The estimated annual cost for password administration per
user is between $340 and $800. In large companies, employees may need
passwords for five to 15 computer applications -- not including personal