“A variant of the mass-mailing Bagle virus started spreading Tuesday, as U.S. businesses returned from the long weekend,” Robert Lemos reports for CNET News.com. “Like the original virus, Bagle.B spreads by sending an e-mail message with an attached copy of its code; a PC is infected when the recipient opens the attachment. The virus, which is programmed to stop spreading Feb. 25, installs software on a person’s PC to allow Bagle.B’s creator to take control of the computer.”
“While the current variant of the virus is similar to the original Bagle, it seems to have taken off a bit faster, said Joe Telafici, director of operations for the antivirus and vulnerability emergency response team at security company Network Associates,” Lemos reports. “‘We are seeing a little bit bigger spike with (reports of) the B variants than with the original virus,’ he said. The first reports of Bagle.B started coming in at 4:30 a.m. PST, he added, but by 7 a.m., the rate at which customers submitted reports started falling off. ‘It is already tailing off rapidly,’ he said.”
“Network Associates rated the virus a ‘medium’ threat, and rival security company Symantec similarly gave the program a 3 on its 5-point scale for Internet threats. E-mail security firm MessageLabs said it stopped about 17,000 copies of the attachment in e-mail messages blocked by its service,” Lemos reports. “Bagle.B, also referred to as Beagle.B by Symantec, appears in an e-mail that may come from someone the victim knows. The e-mail has a subject line of ‘ID (random number)…Thanks.’ The virus is attached to the e-mail as an .exe file, which, when opened, will infect the computer.”
Macintosh personal computers are unaffected.
Full article here.