Ken Dwight's blog

Old Malware Never Dies

Even though we all know that new malware is being introduced every day, it's important to remember that all the old examples may still be a threat too. The only difference is that those old techniques and methods are continually refined to incorporate the sophistication of modern malware.

Just as early viruses were spread via infected floppy disks (remember those?), a common distribution method for today's malware is the ubiquitous USB thumb drive. The infamous Stuxnet worm has infected many computers that weren't even connected to the Internet, using the lowly thumb drive.

Dirty Tricks of the Malware Trade

As malware has grown more sophisticated in recent years, the challenge of removing it has grown more complex. Many of the tools and approaches that computer techs used in the past are no longer effective and may not even be available on an infected computer.

Here are some of the roadblocks you may face when dealing with the current generation of malware.

New Virus Infects BIOS

In a new twist on the ever-changing methods used by malware authors, a recently-discovered virus has been found to infect the BIOS of the targeted computer. Symantec has named this threat Trojan.Mebroni and describes it as follows: Trojan.Mebroni is a Trojan horse that infects the BIOS and the Master Boot Record (MBR). It also downloads an additional file on to the compromised computer.

"The Most Destructive Virus Ever?"

When you see a headline such as this, it's usually written by a non-technical writer in the general media. Or it may come from the producer of rogue security software, trying to scare the reader into buying their bogus program.

But the most recent source of this description is Kaspersky Labs, the legitimate and usually sober producer of Kaspersky Anti-Virus and Kaspersky Internet Security software. One of their milder descriptions refers to this as "the most sophisticated threat today" and even uses the term "indestructible" to describe this infection.