In the spirit of many infosec and antivirus company “announcements” of “new threats” in the past year:
A leading (if unemployed) information security and malware researcher, today noted startling developments (which were first mentioned in 1988, but we’ll leave out that bit) in cross-platform malware.
Dubbed the “metavirus,” this threat could completely swamp the Internet, and render literally billions of computers useless. The chief researcher at the Vancouver Institute for Research into User Security has found that these entities can be created by almost anyone, even without programming knowledge or skills. “This doesn’t even require a malware kit,” said Rob Slade, who has “discovered” this unregarded vulnerability.
Although the number of metavirus “families” are very small, in comparison to the millions of viruses, worms, and trojans discovered yearly, they are remarkably resistant to disinfection. Infections tend to be clustered, and can affect almost all machines in an infected company, network or group.
“This is definitely cross-platform,” said Slade. “It doesn’t rely on a specific operating system, program, or even virtual machine, like Java.” Infections have jumped between Windows, Mac, Linux, iPhones, Android, and even CP/M and VMS machines. Transmission can occur via email, sneakernet, wireless, and even phone and fax. In all cases productivity is affected as time is lost. In one class of the threat machines can be rendered inoperable.
Rob Slade can be made available for presentations on how to deal with this enormous threat. Anyone wanting to protect themselves can send first class airfare, proof of prepaid hotel accommodation, and a bank draft for $15,000 deposit. (US or Canadian dollars, whichever is higher at the time 🙂