April 7, 2006 5:20 PM PDT

Sample virus targets Windows and Linux

Virus writers have crafted another example of malicious software that can infect computers running Windows or Linux.

The proof-of-concept was submitted to Russian antivirus company Kaspersky Lab, which calls it Bi.a. The virus was written in low-level computer code called "assembler" and is limited, as it only infects files in the current directory, Kaspersky said Friday on its Web site. However, it can infect files in the different formats used by Linux and Windows--ELF and PE, respectively, Kaspersky said.

The virus is a classic proof-of-concept, written to show that it's possible to create a cross-platform virus, Kaspersky said. "However, our experience shows that once proof-of-concept code is released, virus writers are usually quick to take the code and adapt it for their own use," Kaspersky said.

That concern is shared by Swa Frantzen, who tracks incidents at the SANS Internet Storm Center, which monitors network threats. "The impact of the proof-of-concept at this point is very low in itself, but it is a sign the cross-platform aspects are becoming important," Frantzen wrote on the ISC blog. "As the developers of viruses continue to research this, we will see more cross-platform malware come about in the future."

Kaspersky has added detection for the malicious software to its antivirus databases.

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8 comments

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AV vendor moonlights as virus writer?
So Kaspersky write the proof on concept and makes the statement "once proof-of-concept code is released, virus writers are usually quick to take the code and adapt it for their own use" and then adds it to their virus definitions?

I have always said I think AV companies write some of this stuff to scare people into buying their products. it is nice to see at lease one of them be honest about it :)

These days nearly all of it is scareware.
Posted by Dachi (797 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I AGREE
AND MY CLIENTS AGREE, SOMEBODY THAT IS SMART ENOUGH TO
CREATE ANTI VIRUS IS ALSO SMART ENOUGH TO CREATE A VIRUS.

~JUSTIN
Posted by OneWithTech (196 comments )
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Those Crafty Russians
Much like the situation with the Soviet Union during the cold war. They built a huge stockpile of nuclear weapons which we were then forced to counter with our own weapons. After the SU fell, they forced us to pay protection money to dismantle those same weapons, less they fall into thr wrong hands. So we paid twice for their militarism. Got to give them credit for being crafty.
Posted by maxwis (141 comments )
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Learn to read
"The proof-of-concept was submitted TO Russian antivirus company Kaspersky Lab, which calls it Bi.a. "

Was submitted to Kaspersky, not by.

Reading comprehension is your friend.
Posted by Bill Dautrive (1179 comments )
Link Flag
Sample proof of concept markets antivirus
It's a proof of concept. No self-replication + No self-automation = NO VIRUS. Thus far it seems to be fear marketing anti-virus software.
Posted by jabbotts (492 comments )
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