Columnist: New Sobig worm due in September; affects only Windows ‘to the delight of Mac devotees eve

“Another Sobig pain may be on way, [so] erect defenses now, or stop crying about the consequences,” writes Mike Berman for Scripps Howard News Service. “In the past month we’ve had to battle the dreaded Blaster Worm, Sobig.E and Sobig.F and, if the computer nerds that track such things are correct, we’ll be faced with another Sobig worm in mid-September.”

“These attacks have become annoying at best, causing our computers to suffer through continuous reboots or clogging our mailboxes with messages from folks we never knew or forgot we knew… Of course, to the delight of Linux and Macintosh devotees everywhere, this latest attack was aimed only at PCs running Microsoft Windows operating systems,” writes Berman.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We are not delighted. This junk slows down networks and fills our Junk email boxes on our Macs and Linux boxes, too. Just as we are not delighted that 85% of the world chooses to wallow in an inferior operating system when a better one, Mac OS X, is readily available, Windows worms and viruses do not cause us glee. It is annoying to know of a better way, to tell people about it, only to have them trudge off to Wal-Mart or Best Buy and inflict themselves with Windows anyway. There may be a measure of “you get what you deserve” in all of this, but we’re annoyed, not delighted as we clean out hundreds of Sobig-generated email dreck from our Macs. Windows Sufferers, please patch your mess already!


  1. You’re right, as a Mac person I take no delight at all in this mess. Unfortunately at work I have to use a PC, then in the evenings on my Mac at home, my DSL connection and e-mail is bogged down with all of this spam and worm mess hogging all the bandwidth. Everything was at a total crawl last week and it’s only just started to improve some in the past couple of days. It’s highly frustrating.

  2. Every night it’s either deleting the emails from the ISP page one-by-one or waiting for the dreaded “Re: Your Details” junk to finish downloading directly into the trash. My productivity has taken a hit from viruses that exploit the trend of people buying the “standard” OS without even contemplating its benefits. It sucks no matter what OS you use.

  3. Absolutely. No delight. Mac users are simply pissed off at Windows and Windows users who are infesting the net like pests with all these virii and worms.

    My filter removed a couple hundreds emails with SoBig and the silly auto-replies: “Your message sent to “Windows-Idiot-probably” contained a virus”

    Get Windows off the net: make it a cleaner place.
    Delighted? I have projectile vomiting instead!!!!!!!!!!

  4. I must admit, part of me kinda delights in this. Contrary to what the reporters say, MAC OSX is a much, much safer environment. And people don’t really do their research, and they are paying for it. Especially the government, and it serves them right. In that case, microsoft lobbys and in turn they get the big contracts – it’s a flawed system that is forced to use a flawed system! So let them get infuriated! In this case the viruses are actualy doing a VERY GOOD THING! In our ever increasing reliance on computers, and in the wake of terrorism, we NEED to get our government on a secure platform, wether that is OS X, or any UNIX station. These viruses are pointing that out…

  5. An opinion somewhat to the contrary, I actually do take a smug type of satisfaction in knowing that my OS of choice is mostly impervious to viruses. My email filter is through, and most of the viruses and junk email never even hits my email account on my Macs anyway. However —- my Internet service is through Roadrunner and I’ve been experiencing outages recently, most likely due to all this crap.

    Therefore I do agree that I most definitely am not delighted with Microsoft’s insecurities or Windows users blind ignorance.

  6. G-spank,

    I agree with that. Still they pisses me off. If it is the price to pay to see Windows banned then I am willing to pay it. Unfortunately virii spread that way because the majority of Windows users are computer illiterates and lemmings.

    They most probably buy a Wintel PC because the neighbor has one and they TRULY want a dual button mouse!!!!!!!!

    The ones who aren’t (illiterate) are switching (I know personally 12 already who did that) and they already had a dual-booting PC with Linux.

  7. Just got this e-mail from my ISP:

    Dear Road Runner Customer:

    There have recently been several viruses affecting the Inter-
    net. These viruses can affect anyone who accesses the Internet
    over any type of connection (dial-up, DSL,cable modem, etc.)

    To insure the Road Runner network is virus free and prevent
    additional attacks on our customer�s computers, we are working
    to identify infected computers on our network. However, in the
    interim, some customers at times may experience slower than
    normal speeds.

    In order to insure your computer is not infected, we ask that
    you scan your computer system immediately and remove any virus
    that is found. We have included information below that we hope
    will be helpful in identifying and removing any viruses.

    Unfortnately statements like “These viruses can affect anyone who accesses the Internet over any type of connection” is the kind of thing that fools most people who aren’t familiar with Macs.

  8. Advice on easily filtering mass spam attacks:

    Using the Apple ap “Mail”, I select a rather large number (30 or more) of the offending emails from the list and go to the menu “Message” and select “Mark as Junk Mail”.

    Your Mac automatically learns what trait these all have in common and junks any new similar spam. I was amazed at its accuracy. I still do a quick cruise through the Junk folder to make sure that I am not deleting anything good that may have been accidentally tossed in their by my Mac, but in those cases I simply mark that particular email as “Not Junk”, and it learns. I have NEVER seen the Mac make a mistake after it has learned!!

    I did this mass junk-teaching just once and it has been better than 99% effective/accurate. Along with Keychain, my Mail’s “junk” knowledgebase is one of the most valuable databases on my computer.

    Granted, the Windows worms still force my email to download tons of unwanted spam (and for dial-up, this ain’t pretty). But, at least I don’t have to worry about wasting my time with sorting. I just read a few websites while it downloads. When it’s done, I still have a very clean in-box.

  9. My ISP started filtering all of these messages after day 2–I haven’t gotten a single once since! Thank goodness.

    It’s still nice that these attacks were voluntarily not “aimed” at Macs. (As if they could have been.)

  10. With all the BS thrown our way on a daily basis about the viability of the Mac platform who WOULDN’T take some delight in these attacks?

    If anything it blows all the tired FUD out of the water. From the “Macs are more expensive” to the 3% market share LIE, the Wintel drones are getting exactly what any ignorant boob deserves. Hundreds of thousands of so called “computer experts” living in a collective hell of lost productivity and chaos.

    The “Misery loves company” saying never applied so well. ;o)

    Personally, I would rather not be a member of the ME TOO crowd.

  11. I work for a small IT consulting firm. The other day I spent FIVE hours running the Symantec Welchia32 worm removal tool on the server and 14 workstations of one of our clients. It found and removed the worm on four PCs (three had the worm in quarantine, one was infected because it had been reimaged some time ago and someone forgot to reinstall the antivirus software). 5 hours x $85/hr = $425. But, but, PCs are cheaper! Yeah, right. Me? I run an all-Mac network at home, and I keep my virus definition files up to date, and I sleep soundly at night.

  12. TruthTeller:

    I know it is tough on your business BUT, but, did you tell your customer “Look, you know you have all these troubles BECAUSE you are on Windows, right?!”

    I do not think IT professionals would loose jobs if there was a massive move out of Windows itno Linux/ OS X.
    You would do other more interesting activities on those companies rather than running an anti-virus for 5 hrs.

    If customers are told each and every time from their IT “get rid of that crap Windows” they will after a while.
    I do not want to push forward the “Windows == ITs job security” but it is nonetheless the impression I get: the category will not see jobs shrinking, ITs will do more interesting tasks on those clusters!

  13. I know that the whole securit thing with Windoze is a big inconvenience to everyone. But, perhaps we should be gratefull to whomever is unleashing these viruses on the Windoze world. After all, Security is not always just an issue of inconvenience. Two years ago, the world watched the terror that was made possible in New York due to lack of adequate security. Are the Windoze boxes running our national defense just as full of holes? All we tend to focus on is the loss of dollars. If these viruses wake up the decision makers as to the dangers of using an inadequate operating system, perhaps we will save lives.

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