Welcome!

Artificial Intelligence Authors: Pat Romanski, Carmen Gonzalez, Rene Buest, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz

News Feed Item

Second Massive Email Virus Attack in a Month Portends Explosive Growth in Fraud, Theft, Spam and Viruses

Storm Worm Drives Volume of Email Viruses on the Internet Upward by a Factor of 20

SAN CARLOS, Calif., Jan. 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Postini, the global leader in on-demand communications security, compliance and productivity solutions for email, instant messaging and the web, today announced that hackers and spammers are raising their onslaught in 2007 as witnessed by two massive, global email-borne virus attacks which took place from December 29 to December 31, 2006 and again from January 19 to January 21, 2007. Each of these attacks was so large that they drove up the level of viruses on the Internet up by a factor of 20 over usual activity.

Both attacks were designed to steal personal information and hijack the recipient's computer to add to ever growing "bot-nets" - massive networks of infected personal computers used to distribute spam and virus attacks. The size and sophistication of these back to back attacks implies that spam and virus levels on the Internet, which are already at all-time highs, will continue to rise as newly hijacked computers are brought into action and begin spewing even more spam and viruses.

This latest attack has become known as the Storm worm because the original email subject line was, "230 dead as storm batters Europe". At the time of the email, there in fact was actually a heavy winter storm occurring in Europe. This is the latest example of the attackers' sophistication and real- time capabilities, launching the attack and timing it to coincide with real news about the storm. The email that contained the virus frequently mutated to show dozens of different fake, sensational but believable headlines designed to tempt the reader into clicking on an attachment and thus infecting their computer. Other subjects included, "Russian missile shot down USA aircraft" and "Saddam Hussein alive!"

The infectious email had a file attachment that contained a trojan horse virus known as Downloader-BAI or AUTH-W32/Downloader. If a person clicks on the attachment, their computer will become infected with the virus which then attempts to send personal information (including email addresses, financial information and credit card information) from that computer back to the hackers who created the virus. They can then use this information for identity theft or sell it to others. The virus also provides a back-door for hackers to take control of the computer and add it to a bot-net to be used in future spam and virus attacks. This attack also illustrated the escalating vicious cycle of spam and viruses being fueled by and creating bot-nets. The virus was distributed by email, which was sent from bot-net zombies that had been infected by previous email-borne viruses and the intent of the virus was to infect even more computers and turn them into larger bot-net zombie network to use in future spam and virus attacks. The email subject, content and virus all mutated many times over the course of the outbreak in an attempt to evade detection. Anti-virus engine providers had to issue several signature updates throughout the outbreak.

As the virus attack began, Postini's PREEMPT email protection service immediately began blocking the worm. Over the three day period, Postini stopped more than 29 million infected messages from reaching the 36,000 businesses Postini provides email security services for. On January 20, 2007 alone, Postini blocked almost 17 million infected email messages, nearly 20 times the average daily virus volume in 2006.

The January 2007 Storm worm follows on the heels of another email-borne virus, the Happy New Year worm, which attacked the Internet in late December 2006. The Happy New Year worm contained a subject line and an attachment exploiting the expectations of legitimate postcards and greetings from friends and families. The infected attachment contained numerous strains of malicious code (including Tibs, Nuwar, Banwarum, and Glowa) as well as two root kits designed to hide the presence of the malicious code from anti-virus scans. Ultimately, the goal of the Happy New Year worm was to create more zombie computers that could be added to bot-nets and used for additional spamming and other attacks.

Starting on December 28, 2006, Internet virus volumes began to dramatically increase and Postini PREEMPT email protection began blocking infected messages. At the peak of the outbreak on December 30, 2006, Postini blocked 19.5 million messages infected with the Happy New Year worm and its variants.

These two attacks were by far the largest to occur in the past 12 months. "The explosion of bot-nets, millions of infected computers controlled by malicious actors around the world, has changed the balance of power in the world communications security," said Daniel Druker, executive vice president of marketing at Postini. "As Valentines Day approaches, email users should continue to keep their guard up, as there are already new mutations of the Storm worm with love-related subject lines."

About Postini

Postini is the global leader in on-demand communications security, compliance and productivity solutions for email, instant messaging and the web. Postini offers an award-winning suite of on-demand services for electronic communications, including protection from viruses, spam, phishing, fraud and other attacks, secure messaging, and archiving, discovery and production of electronic messages. The company's powerful on-demand infrastructure integrates with customers' environments, providing security, compliance and productivity solutions for more companies than any other provider in the world. Postini's services are designed to protect organizations from a wide range of threats, reduce compliance and legal risks, ensure reliable communications, and enable the intelligent management and enforcement of enterprise policies that protect companies' intellectual property, reputations and business relationships. For more information please contact Postini at [email protected] or visit http://www.postini.com/ .

Media Contacts: Marty Tacktill Postini (650) 486-8269 [email protected] Derek Kober GlobalFluency (650) 433-4233 [email protected]

Postini

CONTACT: Marty Tacktill of Postini, +1-650-486-8269, or
[email protected]; or Derek Kober of GlobalFluency, +1-650-433-4233, or
[email protected]

Web site: http://www.postini.com/

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the USA and Europe, we work with a variety of customers from emerging startups to Fortune 1000 companies.
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
In his keynote at @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Director of IoT Engineering at Citrix and co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, focused on building an IoT platform and company. He provided a behind-the-scenes look at Octoblu’s platform, business, and pivots along the way (including the Citrix acquisition of Octoblu).
SYS-CON Events announced today that CollabNet, a global leader in enterprise software development, release automation and DevOps solutions, will be a Bronze Sponsor of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, taking place from June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CollabNet offers a broad range of solutions with the mission of helping modern organizations deliver quality software at speed. The company’s latest innovation, the DevOps Lifecycle Manager (DLM), supports Value S...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Val...
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Analytic. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
The age of Digital Disruption is evolving into the next era – Digital Cohesion, an age in which applications securely self-assemble and deliver predictive services that continuously adapt to user behavior. Information from devices, sensors and applications around us will drive services seamlessly across mobile and fixed devices/infrastructure. This evolution is happening now in software defined services and secure networking. Four key drivers – Performance, Economics, Interoperability and Trust ...
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Val...
The Internet of Things is clearly many things: data collection and analytics, wearables, Smart Grids and Smart Cities, the Industrial Internet, and more. Cool platforms like Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Intel's Galileo and Edison, and a diverse world of sensors are making the IoT a great toy box for developers in all these areas. In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists discussed what things are the most important, which will have the most profound e...
Multiple data types are pouring into IoT deployments. Data is coming in small packages as well as enormous files and data streams of many sizes. Widespread use of mobile devices adds to the total. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists will look at the tools and environments that are being put to use in IoT deployments, as well as the team skills a modern enterprise IT shop needs to keep things running, get a handle on all this data, and deli...
With billions of sensors deployed worldwide, the amount of machine-generated data will soon exceed what our networks can handle. But consumers and businesses will expect seamless experiences and real-time responsiveness. What does this mean for IoT devices and the infrastructure that supports them? More of the data will need to be handled at - or closer to - the devices themselves.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Grape Up will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company specializing in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the U.S. and Europe, Grape Up works with a variety of customers from emergi...
@ThingsExpo has been named the Most Influential ‘Smart Cities - IIoT' Account and @BigDataExpo has been named fourteenth by Right Relevance (RR), which provides curated information and intelligence on approximately 50,000 topics. In addition, Right Relevance provides an Insights offering that combines the above Topics and Influencers information with real time conversations to provide actionable intelligence with visualizations to enable decision making. The Insights service is applicable to eve...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists will examine how DevOps helps to meet th...
Five years ago development was seen as a dead-end career, now it’s anything but – with an explosion in mobile and IoT initiatives increasing the demand for skilled engineers. But apart from having a ready supply of great coders, what constitutes true ‘DevOps Royalty’? It’ll be the ability to craft resilient architectures, supportability, security everywhere across the software lifecycle. In his keynote at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Jeffrey Scheaffer, GM and SVP, Continuous Delivery Busine...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitachi, the leading provider the Internet of Things and Digital Transformation, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., offers an integrated portfolio of services and solutions that enable digital transformation through enhanced data management, governance, mobility and analytics. We help globa...