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One Virus Down, One to Go

While the Kama Sutra virus failed to live up to its voracious billing, a new mystery virus will keep IT managers on their toes over the weekend.

According to reports, the new and as yet unnamed virus caused trading to be suspended for an hour today on the Russian Trading System (RTS) stock exchange. The virus took out a trading system with a classic denial-of-service attack, overloading RTS routers till they shut down.

But experts are still scratching their heads about the new threat. We don’t know what virus it is yet,” admits Carole Theriault, Senior Security Consultant at analyst firm Sophos Plc. “It could be a worm, it could be a bespoke Trojan.”

Unlike the Kama Sutra virus, which has dominated the media for weeks, the attack on the Russian stock exchange came totally out of the blue. Theriault thinks this should serve as a warning to other users: “It’s a good reminder. It’s the ones that you don’t hear about that are the most dangerous.”

Theriault told Byte and Switch that events in Russia underline the need for firms to think about data backup. “No one wants to be in that position -- you can imagine how much money was lost in the hour when the system was down.”

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