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Top Ten Viruses and Hoaxes Reported To Sophos in January 2004

  • 02 February, 2004 12:28

<p>Late entry MyDoom storms to the top of the chart.</p>
Sydney, 02 February 2004.</p>
<p>Sophos, a world leader in protecting businesses against spam and viruses, has revealed the top ten viruses and hoaxes causing problems for businesses around the world.</p>
<p>Two new entries shot to the top of the charts this month, despite appearing only in the last two weeks. Bagle shot to prominence on 19 January before falling dormant on 28 January. MyDoom, programmed to launch a Denial of Service (DoS) attack on SCO's website from 01 February, was even more rampant, reaching number one in less than a week. MyDoom will fall dormant on 12 February. These two viruses account for more than 40 per cent of reports to Sophos during January 2004.</p>
<p>The top ten viruses in January 2004 were as follows:</p>
<p>1. W32/MyDoom-A (MyDoom worm) 25.1% NEW ENTRY</p>
<p>2. W32/Bagle-A (Bagle worm) 16.3% NEW ENTRY</p>
<p>3. W32/Sober-C (Sober variant) 9.9%</p>
<p>4. W32/Dumaru-A (Dumaru virus) 5.3%</p>
<p>5. W32/Mimail-J (Mimail variant) 3.1%</p>
<p>6. W32/Mimail-A (Mimail worm) 2.7%</p>
<p>7. W32/Mimail-K (Mimail variant) 2.6%</p>
<p>8. W32/Mimail-C (Mimail variant) 2.2%</p>
<p>9. W32/Mimail-I (Mimail variant) 1.0%</p>
<p>10.W32/Klez-H (Klez variant) 0.8% 24 MONTHS IN CHART</p>
<p>Others 31.0%</p>
<p>"Both Bagle and MyDoom open up 'backdoors' on your PC. This means that once you are infected, attackers can take control of your computer remotely – this shows once again how much more important prevention is than cure," warns Paul Ducklin, Head of Technology, Asia Pacific at Sophos in Sydney.</p>
<p>Ducklin also warns about over-stating the threat. "MyDoom has caused serious problems, mainly because of the large volume of email it has generated, but it also seems to have the dubious distinction of being the most-hyped virus in history. We are already seeing statements that MyDoom has caused US$38 billion in damage, which somehow seems to beggar belief," said Ducklin.</p>
<p>"I think we should be much more concerned about the damage and distress caused by storms in Queensland over the past few days than by MyDoom, which is, after all, pretty easy to prevent and – thanks to free downloads from most anti-virus companies – easy to remove from your computer."</p>
<p>Sophos analysed and protected against 608 new viruses in January. The total number of viruses Sophos now protects against is 87,419.</p>
<p>The top ten hoaxes reported to Sophos during January are as follows:</p>
<p>1. Hotmail hoax 15.2% SIXTH MONTH AT NUMBER ONE</p>
<p>2. Meninas da Playboy 15.0%</p>
<p>3. Budweiser frogs screensaver 11.1%</p>
<p>4. A virtual card for you 6.8%</p>
<p>5. Bonsai kitten 6.2%</p>
<p>6. JDBGMGR 4.1%</p>
<p>7. Elf Bowling 3.8%</p>
<p>8. Bill Gates fortune 3.6%</p>
<p>9. Applebees Gift Certificate 2.4%</p>
<p>10.Frog in a blender/Fish in a bowl 2.2%</p>
<p>Others 29.6%</p>
<p>Sophos has made available a free, constantly updated information feed for intranets and websites which means users can always find out about the latest viruses and hoaxes:</p>
<p>Graphics of the above Top Ten virus chart are available at:</p>
<p>For more information about safe computing, including anti-hoax policies, please visit:</p>
<p>Notes for Editors.</p>
<p>About Sophos.
Sophos is a world leading specialist developer of anti-virus and anti-spam software. Sophos is headquartered in the UK and protects all types of organisations, including small- to medium-sized businesses, large corporations, banks, governments and educational institutions against viruses and spam. The company is acclaimed for delivering the highest level of customer satisfaction and protection in the industry. Sophos's products, backed by 24 hour support are sold and supported in more than 150 countries.</p>
<p>Sophos's regional head office for Australia and New Zealand is in Sydney and hosts one of the company's three Computer Virus Research and Development Laboratories to provide global support services.</p>
Paul Ducklin ( is available for comment:
+61 2 9409 9100 (tel)
+61 2 407 320 515 (mob)
+61 2 9409 9191 (fax)</p>
<p>Sophos's press contact at Gotley Nix Evans is:
Michael Henderson (
+61 2 9957 5555 (tel)
+61 413 054 738 (mobile)
+61 2 9957 5575 (fax)</p>

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