New Netsky.C variant reported

A new version of the NetSky e-mail worm has begun circulating through the Internet, anti-virus software companies reported on Wednesday.

Like its predecessor NetsSky.B, which struck last week, the worm, known as Netsky.C, arrives via e-mail messages with familiar subject lines like "Question," "Fwd: lol," and "Re: hey." Users launch the worm by clicking on attachments accompanying the messages.

"They're keeping subject messages really simple, which entices users to click on the attachment," said Steven Sundermeier, the vice president of products and services with security software vendor Central Command. "You could see how that kind of piques users' curiosity."

Once launched, the worm then installs its own mail server on the user's computer and begins sending infected e-mail using addresses it collects from the infected computer.

The worm also appears to target users of file sharing services, said Sundermeier. "If it finds any subdirectory that has the word "shar" in its name, it will drop a long list of enticing filenames in it, which are copies of itself," he said. "That now makes it available through file sharing applications like Kazaa or instant messaging applications."

These infected files have a variety of names, including "Adobe Photoshop 9 full.exe," Microsoft Office 2003 Crack.exe" and "Dark Angels.pif," Sundermeier said.

NetSky.C first appeared Tuesday night (U.S. Pacific time), said Patrick Hinojosa, the chief technology officer with Panda Software. By Wednesday morning, 3 percent of the users of Panda's on-line virus checking service were infected, he said. "Three percent within one day is a pretty good clip, so this one looks like it's spreading a little bit faster than NetSky.B," he said.

The NetSky.C worm is very similar to its NetSky.B predecessor, but "B" uses different subject names, and searches for subdirectories with the word "sharing" instead of "shar," Sundermeier said.

Another difference is that version C causes the user's computer to beep when the infected file is launched. "It's kind of a computerish type sound," said Hinojosa. "That's a sure sign when you get it."

NetSky.B displays a Windows error message saying "the file could not be opened," when it infects a computer, he said.

A WAV file of the sound that NetSky.C makes can be found here: http://www.pandasoftware.com/img/enc/W32NetskyC.wav

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Robert McMillan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?