Sophos: Top 10 Viruses and Hoaxes in November 2002

This is the latest in a series of monthly charts counting down the ten most frequently occurring viruses and hoaxes as compiled by Sophos, a world leader in corporate anti-virus protection.

For November 2002, the virus chart is as follows, with the most
frequently occurring virus at number one:

1. W32/Bugbear-A (Bugbear worm) 29.4% SECOND MONTH AT NUMBER ONE
2. W32/Braid-A (Braid worm) 8.5% NEW ENTRY
3. W32/Klez-H (Klez variant) 7.7% TENTH MONTH IN TOP TEN
4. W32/Opaserv-A (Opaserv worm) 5.4%
5. W32/Opaserv-C (Opaserv variant) 5.1%
6. W32/Flcss (FunLove worm) 4.6% RE-ENTRY
7. W95/Spaces (Spaces virus) 3.3% RE-ENTRY
8. W32/Opaserv-F (Opaserv variant) 2.5%
9. W32/Opaserv-B (Opaserv variant) 2.1%
10.W32/Opaserv-D (Opaserv variant) 2.0%

Others: 29.4%

“Bugbear dominates the chart for the second month as it continues to
out-fox users with its dual mode of attack – this worm can spread via
email and network shares,” said Graham Cluley, senior technology
consultant, Sophos Anti-Virus. “It’s important that all users ensure
they are protected against Bugbear because it implants code that can log
victims’ keystrokes. This means hackers have a perfect view of
everything you type – this could include passwords, bank account details
and credit card numbers.”

Also making a big impact this month was the new Braid worm. This is an
email aware worm with an attachment. However, if the recipient’s system
is left unpatched against a Microsoft vulnerability, the virus can run
automatically, as soon as the offending email is opened. Alongside
keeping anti-virus protection up to date, Sophos reminds users to patch
against all known vulnerabilities and be suspicious of all unsolicited

The FunLove worm and Spaces virus make chart comebacks even though
protection against these threats was issued back in 1999.

Sophos detected 817 new viruses, worms and Trojan horses in November,
the total number it now protects against is 78,381.

The top ten hoaxes reported to Sophos during November 2002 are as

1. JDBGMGR 22.0%
2. Budweiser frogs screensaver 11.5%
3. Meninas la playboy 7.9%
4. Hotmail hoax 5.5%
5. A virtual card for you 5.0%
6. Bonsai kitten 3.5%
7. Mobile phone hoax 3.2%
8. Frog in a blender/fish in a bowl 2.8%
9. Bill Gates fortune 2.5%
10.WTC Survivor 2.1%

Others 34.0%

“All too often, users receiving email warnings of viruses circulate them
to all their contacts in the mistaken belief they are doing good. In
reality, these actions cause uncertainty, waste bandwidth, clog up email
servers and spread disinformation,” continued Cluley. “Instead,
businesses should instruct all employees to send all such emails to a
single, nominated person who is responsible for checking out whether the
threat is real or fake.”

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:

Graphics of the above Top Ten virus chart are available at:

For more information about safe computing, including anti-hoax policies,
please visit:

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