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Top Ten Viruses and Hoaxes Reported to Sophos in February 2004

  • 01 March, 2004 14:15

<p>Sober-C reclaims top spot</p>
Sydney, 1 March 2004</p>
<p>Sophos, a world leader in protecting businesses against spam and viruses, has revealed the top ten viruses and hoaxes causing problems for businesses around the world.</p>
<p>The report, which examines virus and hoax reports in the month of February 2004, shows MyDoom-A slip off the top spot, to allow for Sober-C's return to the number one position.</p>
<p>The top ten viruses in February 2004 were as follows:</p>
<p>1. W32/Sober-C (Sober variant) 35.3%</p>
<p>2. W32/MyDoom-A (MyDoom worm) 25.3%</p>
<p>3. W32/Netsky-B (Netsky variant) 7.8% NEW ENTRY</p>
<p>4. W32/Bagle-B (Bagle variant) 5.3% NEW ENTRY</p>
<p>5. W32/Dumaru-A (Dumaru worm) 2.6%</p>
<p>6. W32/Mimail-J (Mimail variant) 2.4%</p>
<p>7. W32/Mimail-C (Mimail variant) 1.8%</p>
<p>8. W32/Mimail-Q (Mimail variant) 1.1%</p>
<p>9. W32/Bagle-A (Bagle worm) 1.1%</p>
<p>10.W32/Gibe-F (Gibe variant) 1.0%</p>
<p>Others 16.3%</p>
<p>“Though protection for it has been available since December, Sober-C managed to claim the top position again, ahead of several higher profile worms including Mydoom-A, Netsky-B and Bagle-B," said Sean Richmond, Sophos’s Technical Support Manager for Australia and New Zealand. “Sober-C travels via email and KaZaA networks and is continuing to spread widely – perhaps a sign that those being affected, should automate anti-virus updates to strengthen their defences against known threats."</p>
<p>"MyDoom-A, which used its large network of infected machines to attack SCO's website, may well have taken the lead if not for the built in expiry date of February 12. As it stands, it still managed to be the second most reported virus this month," continued Richmond. "MyDoom-B attempted a similar attack on Microsoft's website, however this worm fizzled and was not among Sophos's top ten.”</p>
<p>February also saw some increased action in the fight against computer crime, with Microsoft offering another bounty of USD 250,000 to catch the author of Mydoom-B and the arrest of a female virus writer in Belgium known as Gigabyte.</p>
<p>Sophos analysed and protected against 869 new viruses in February. The total number of viruses Sophos now protects against is 88,288.</p>
<p>The top ten hoaxes reported to Sophos during February are as follows:</p>
<p>1. Hotmail hoax 17.3% SEVENTH MONTH AT NUMBER ONE</p>
<p>2. Meninas da Playboy 15.7%</p>
<p>3. JDBGMGR 10.1%</p>
<p>4. Budweiser frogs screensaver 6.2%</p>
<p>5. Bonsai kitten 5.5%</p>
<p>6. A virtual card for you 3.7%</p>
<p>7. WTC Survivor 3.6%</p>
<p>8. Bill Gates fortune 3.4%</p>
<p>9. Elf Bowling 3.2%</p>
<p>10.Applebees Gift Certificate 2.8%</p>
<p>Others 28.5%</p>
<p>Sophos has made available a free, constantly updated information feed for intranets and websites which means users can always find out about the latest viruses and hoaxes:</p>
<p>Graphics of the above Top Ten virus chart are available at:</p>
<p>For more information about safe computing, including anti-hoax policies, please visit:
<p>Notes for Editors.</p>
<p>About Sophos.
Sophos is a world leading specialist developer of anti-virus and anti-spam software. Sophos is headquartered in the UK and protects all types of organisations, including small- to medium-sized businesses, large corporations, banks, governments and educational institutions against viruses and spam. The company is acclaimed for delivering the highest level of customer satisfaction and protection in the industry. Sophos's products, backed by 24 hour support are sold and supported in more than 150 countries.</p>
<p>Sophos's regional head office for Australia and New Zealand is in Sydney and hosts one of the company's three Computer Virus Research and Development Laboratories to provide global support services.</p>
Sean Richmond ( is available for comment:
+61 2 9409 9100 (tel)
+61 2 9409 9191 (fax)</p>
<p>Sophos's press contact at Gotley Nix Evans is:
Michael Henderson (
+61 2 9957 5555 (tel)
+61 413 054 738 (mobile)
+61 2 9957 5575 (fax)</p>

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