Storm worm pulls Halloween hoax

More tricks, no treats.

It wouldn't be Halloween without the zombie-creating Storm malware up to some mischief.

The latest Storm-backed spam campaign invites e-mail recipients to visit a Halloween-themed Web site where they can download a dancing skeleton. What gets downloaded instead is a version of the Storm malware that turns unsuspecting users' PCs into members of the world's largest botnet. Members of these botnets are also known as zombies.

According to security vendor Marshal, the e-mail's embedded link is not to a URL but to an IP address. Users who click on the link to the Halloween Web site and don't have their browsers up to date with security patches could automatically become infected, Marshal says. Those who have current patches but click on the link to download the dancing skeleton could also become infected.

Storm's creators are nothing if not prolific. These malware writers jump on current event topics and seasonal happenings to lure e-mail users into visiting infected Web sites in attempts to grow their botnet, which some say now totals over 1 million members. Recent Storm spam campaigns have used Labor Day, the opening of the National Football League's season, and promises of YouTube video clips and current music snippets to trick recipients into clicking on Web links and becoming infected.

The malware's creators are also quick to deflect attempts by researchers to learn more about Storm. The worm can figure out which users are trying to probe its command-and-control servers and retaliates by launching distributed denial-of-service attacks against them, shutting down their Internet access for days, according to an IBM/ISS security professional.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Cara Garretson

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?