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...

It's not a reality—yet—but accounting software is poised to eliminate accountants. We are at a tipping point for many similar professions: online education replacing professors, legal software replacing...
Whenever I speak to accountants about creating a cloud practice, the most common question is, “How do I charge my clients?” Ten years ago, maybe even five years ago, if I would’ve posed this question...
While reputational risk is the No. 1 nonfinancial concern among corporate directors, cybersecurity/IT risk is gaining steam. In fact, both private companies and organizations with more than $1 billion in revenue felt they...

Upcoming CPE Webinars

Jul 31
In this session Excel expert David Ringstrom helps beginners get up to speed in Microsoft Excel. However, even experienced Excel users will learn some new tricks, particularly when David discusses under-utilized aspects of Excel.
Aug 5
This webcast will focus on accounting and disclosure policies for various types of consolidations and business combinations.
Aug 20
In this session we'll review best practices for how to generate interest in your firm’s services.
Aug 21
Meet budgets and client expectations using project management skills geared toward the unique challenges faced by CPAs. Kristen Rampe will share how knowing the keys to structuring and executing a successful project can make the difference between success and repeated failures.