New worm spreading via Skype

Posted by   Virus Bulletin on   Sep 11, 2007

Multilingual malware posing as porn in chat messages.

VoIP and chat system Skype has been targeted by another worm, sending chat messages to harvested contacts posing as links to pornographic images, which in fact download and install copies of the worm. The new malware has been variously dubbed 'Pykspa.D', 'Skipi.A', 'Ramex.a' and 'Pykse.b'.

The fake messages, which are as likely to come from known contacts as from strangers, can contain text in a wide range of languages selected by the worm based on the sender's system locale settings, which hint that the linked erotic images may be of interest to the recipient. Following the link brings up a 'soap bubble' screensaver, and installs the worm.

Once a system is infected, the worm attempts to disable a range of security software, and adjusts the Windows hosts file to prevent access to security updates and advice. It harvests further addresses from the local contacts list and continues spreading itself across the Skype network.

The worm, a variant of a previous Skype worm seen in April, is currently thought to be spreading at fairly low levels, and requires user interaction to accept and run the malware. Users are reminded to exercise caution online and to ignore unsolicited messages containing suspect links.

A Skype blog posting with initial details, including manual removal instructions, is here. Further discussion on the Symantec blog is here, with detailed analysis of the malware here.

Posted on 11 September 2007 by Virus Bulletin

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