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** 'Homepage' Worm Slithers Across Globe
Virus experts are warning of a quickly spreading E-mail worm
known as "Homepage" that affects users of Microsoft's Outlook
E-mail program. According to Mikko Hypponen, manager of
anti-virus research at F-Secure Corp. in Helsinki, Finland, the
worm was first spotted Tuesday in the United States, but soon
spread across the world, hitting Australia and New Zealand the
hardest. The worm is currently battering Europe, but the United
States has so far dodged serious infection.
The worm arrives in users' mailboxes with the subject "Homepage"
and the message "You've got to see this page! It's really cool
;O)." The E-mail has an attached file named homepage.HTML.vba,
and when an Outlook user opens it, the worm sends itself to all
the addresses in the users' address books, deletes the original
message, and then randomly opens one of four X-rated Web pages.
The worm appears to do no damage to a victim's PC, but in the
process of forwarding itself, it can crash mail servers with
Hypponen says Homepage is very similar to the Kournikova worm
that infected servers worldwide in February. Both were created
with the same toolkit. Homepage is the more dangerous of the two,
he says, because its still-unknown author used the kit to create
the worm but then altered it so it couldn't be detected by
anti-viral programs. He says, "It really isn't a fair war between
us and the virus writers because they have access to our tools."
- David M. Ewalt
Click here for four ways to protect yourself:
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