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The Baddies Stay Current

Give the virus baddies one thing: They keep up with current events. Two viruses making the rounds play off recent news events as part of the ploy to convince users to open the payload.

First, on February 22 the FBI took the unusual step of warning users that the agency does not send unsolicited e-mail to the public, in response to a virus that comes in a message claiming to be from the FBI with a request to answer a survey attached to the e-mail. This one works on making you feel that you've inadvertantly visited an illegal site that's brought you under federal scrutiny--if you don't want to end up in the hoosegow, open the attachment. Needless to say, you shouldn't open the attachment.

Next in our current events report is the ever-popular "See Paris Hilton Nude" ploy, this time working from the recent hacking attack on Ms. Hilton's Blackberry. There are actually two viruses working this angle, a Sober.K variant, and an Ahker.C variety. Both are nasty, and each tempts you to either visit a site or open a file to fill your otherwise drab day with bodacious ta-tas. Needless to say, you shouldn't.

All of these viruses have moved to social engineering (Be Afraid! Be Excited!) to deliver their payload as a way around the generally improving state of virus protection. As always, a solid policy of not opening files if you didn't ask for them is a critical piece of virus protection.