Lovsan Internet Virus Spreading Rapidly

The latest infection to grab hold of the Internet is a virus that has been dubbed Lovsan, so named for the "I just want to say LOVE YOU SAN!" message the virus has been leaving behind on vulnerable computers.

The infection began spreading across the Internet on Monday, and tens of thousands of computers were affected by mid-afternoon. Researchers fear the virus may reach epidemic proportions after spreading overnight Monday. The Lovsan virus is also known as Blaster.

The virus takes advantage of a weakness in the Microsoft Windows operating systems that was publicized earlier this summer. The vulnerability provides hackers with an opportunity to fool computers into accepting dangerous commands. While not damaging data on infected computers, the virus does cause the computers to shut down.

Besides leaving the Lovsan message behind, the virus also contains a hidden message: "billy gates why do you make this possible? Stop making money and fix your software!" The worm also attempts to perform a Denial of Service on the windowsupdate.com file, affecting computers that are not protected, according to the description on the Symantec Web site. In addition, computers affected with the virus are programmed to launch an attack on the Microsoft Web site that provides patches for the virus.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has issued an urgent warning about the Microsoft vulnerability and recommends that all computer owners update their operating systems as soon as possible. Patches are available on the Microsoft Web site.

Whether or not the virus takes hold and disrupts Internet activity depends on how many systems are affected. "It really depends on how much it spreads," said Vincent Gullotto, a vice president at Network Associates Inc.

The virus does not spread through e-mail as so many other world-wide viruses have done. Instead the virus can spread to anyone with an Internet connection. "This means you can't do anything to stop your computer getting it, unless you install a firewall [protective anti-virus software]," said Peter Mitchell, a computer security expert in Australia.

Computers are being infected around the world. Officials in Sweden reported this morning that Internet servers are becoming clogged with the virus and systems are crashing.

You may like these other stories...

Cybersecurity is no longer the domain of an organization's IT staff. It's moved to the boardroom, and in a big way. Accountants and financial managers may have been thinking it's just the province of the tech...
You probably don't want to think about how many times you access the File menu in Excel 2010 or 2013. Personally I think Excel 2010 has the best possible File menu arrangement, other than having Print Preview grafted...
Following other recent high-profile hacking events, investigators discovered yesterday that hackers broke into the draft work paper files of several famous CPA firms. Revealing images of the scantily clad documents have been...

Already a member? log in here.

Upcoming CPE Webinars

Sep 24
In this jam-packed presentation Excel expert David Ringstrom, CPA will give you a crash-course in creating spreadsheet-based dashboards. A dashboard condenses large amounts of data into a compact space, yet enables the end user to easily drill down into details when warranted.
Sep 30
This webcast will include discussions of important issues in SSARS No. 19 and the current status of proposed changes by the Accounting and Review Services Committee in these statements.
Oct 21
Kristen Rampe will share how to speak and write more effectively by understanding your own and your audience's communication style.
Oct 23
Amber Setter will show the value of leadership assessments as tools for individual and organizational leadership development initiatives.