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Indian Cyber-space Inflicted with Twin Viruses

The Indian Computer Emergency Response Team, ICERT, has warned that twin new viruses are spreading across the Indian Internet this month, i.e. March 2010. However, one of the two is believed to be foiled, the Team said.

The first virus is a fake anti-virus program named 'Personal security.' It has been spreading through e-mails, drawing recipients' attention, as the e-mails use the phrase "personal security" in their subject line. ICERT, on March 11, 2010, issued a security warning about this virus.

The e-mails reportedly carry an attachment or a Web-link, which, on clicking creates an icon of a system plate. Also, an error note gets displayed. Simultaneously, the user is linked up with a remote server called 'safety.updated.com.' Thereafter, a bogus message for system scanning appears, with the page caption stating "Personal Security-System Scan."

Security experts said that Personal Security virus is a dodgy undesirable application which attaches itself onto PCs, provided their users visit a malicious site. The virus will hijack PCs and the confidential data of the end-users.

Furthermore, according to the experts, copying the traditional cyber-security variants, the Personal Security virus rapidly propagates on PCs through the Internet or common trojans that dwell on infected sites.

The ICERT, on March 16, 2010, issued another warning for the second virus, but for that, no fix has been found out till date. This virus, named Backdoor.Sykipot, too spreads through e-mails, with users visiting compromised sites.

Backdoor.Sykipot represents a Trojan which creates a backdoor for a remote attacker so that he can acquire control over the infected PC. The malware also receives and accomplishes remote commands, uploads and downloads data, said experts.

Vijay Mukhi, an e-security expert, stated that it was nearly impractical to detect the sources of the viruses. The one and only way of safety from the programs is avoiding opening e-mails coming in from strangers. Moreover, websites that are compromised mustn't be viewed, the expert added, as reported by DNA on March 18, 2010.

Finally, security specialists stated that to eliminate the threats, users must run Anti-spyware and anti-virus software on their computers for the full system scan. Alternatively, they could use Online Virus Scanner, which doesn't require installing anti-virus software.

Related article: Indian Financial Industry Facing Rising Online Fraud

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