AUGUST 25, 2004
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New MyDoom Strikes Search Engines
 
Posted by Andrew Brandt
Tuesday, July 27, 2004, 09:38 AM (PST)


Word has it from security experts at The SANS Institute that the new MyDoom virus is jamming up a lot of big search engines. Apparently, the new variant (known as MyDoom.M or MyDoom.O, depending on who you ask) searches the Web for folks who have an e-mail address in the same domain name as the infected person's own address. I'd hate to be the guy or gal who owns the first Hotmail.com email address that comes up. Boy, are they going to have a bad spam day (although early reports indicate MyDoom is avoiding Hotmail and other huge domains).

The worm arrives via e-mail, notably as a file attachment, so safe computing rules apply: Dig a 6 foot deep or greater pit, and throw your PC in there, then cover the hole with sheets of lead no thinner than 6 inches thick, soil, and concrete. Then stomp up and down on the pile until you turn red.

Seriously, though, it's a good time to check to make sure your virus definitions are up to date. And of course, be extra cautious about opening attachments, even if they come from people you know. Don't forget that viruses have this annoying trait of spoofing the return address, which confounds both victims and those whose e-mail address is sullied when the virus poses as an e-mail from someone who's innocent of spreading infection.

And speaking of viruses, tomorrow is the opening day of the Black Hat Briefings, the corporate, buttoned-down version of the Defcon 12 hacker's conference/party that starts Friday. I'll be heading to the 107-plus-degree heat of the Nevada desert, to a sleepy little town we'll call Las Vegas, to hear the corporate security gurus and government investigators talk about the trends of the past year and prognosticate on the future of computer security. It's sure to be a wild few days, considering the computer security business has been busy lately (to put it mildly). I'll be blogging from the site, posting news and interesting photos taken from this mecca for security professionals.

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