Trojans arriving by spam

Two new Trojan horse attacks are currently being sent via an e-mail spam format across the Internet by a hacker who persuades users to install it as a new screen saver, and then uses it to get access to those users' systems.

The BackDoor-G Trojan horse is being distributed like spam e-mail in the guise of a new screensaver, a game update, and other misdirection. Once installed, the program will provide an individual with complete surreptitious access to the client system.

A similar Trojan horse is also currently spreading through France under the name Armageddon, and may spread to the United States as well.

The programs are essentially the same, but use different file names.

"Basically, they just open a hole into enterprises," said Sal Viveros, group marketing manager for Total Virus Defense at Network Associates, which has received several samples of the attack since Wednesday last week. "It's really just a hack tool for hackers to gain entrance to individuals, companies, whatever."

The Trojan horse, when installed, will have the client "ping" an alert to the hacker to inform them of the successful installation of the backdoor program.

Network Associates is still following the electronic trail to the hacker.

"We're still trying to figure out exactly where that [ping] is going," said Viveros. "It doesn't seem to be any specific industry or group is being targeted."

The new Trojan horses are similar to previous attacks that enabled hackers to secretly gain access to a client system, such as BackOrifice and NetBus, as they represent a new mixture of virus and intrusion tools, according to Viveros. The new mixture of technologies now requires security updates to be issued to more than one type of security application.

"We're adding this to our antivirus program, but we're also adding this to CyberCop, our intrusion-detection application, because it really is both," said Viveros. "It's starting to blur the lines between malicious code attack and security vulnerability."

BackDoor-G and Armageddon are also difficult to detect because both can change their file names, and therefore hide from traditional methods of simply deleting suspicious files.

To protect against the risk of vulnerability, you should update both your antivirus and intrusion-detection software, according to Viveros.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matthew Nelson

PC World
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?