Major New Virus Doubles UK’s Email Traffic In 24 Hours

A major new variant of the Sober virus Sober.Z – has hit the internet today, approximately doubling the amount of email traffic on the internet in the last 24 hour period according to Email Management specialist Email Systems.

Since the virus first struck at approximately 7pm GMT on Monday 21st November, the amount of viruses being sent per hour has approximately tripled, indicating that this particular strain of Sober virus has been written to rapidly exploit the so-called “zero hour’ holes in anti-virus security software (the time before anti-virus software writers have prepared and distributed an update to repair infected PCs).

Email Systems has noted that there are currently approximately thirty times the usual quantity of virus infected emails being sent and received online.

As with other variants of the Sober Virus, Sober.z aims to disable the security settings of infected PCs, creating a mailing engine to spam copies of itself to addresses in the infected PCs address book. The virus can also potentially be used to steal information from the recipient’s machine.

Neil Hammerton, CEO of Email Systems, commented:
“This is one of the worst viruses to strike in some time, spreading extremely rapidly. Although AV updates are actually now available from the major software vendors, it seems as though this particular variant managed to quickly grab a sufficiently large foothold to continue to propagate once the fixes were unveiled. Again this serves to underline the importance of using a specialist managed service for corporate email as users experience no zero hour syndrome as with AV software, given that our systems are specifically designed to continually check for virus-like activity and block infected emails before they reach the users’ network or PC.”

Email Systems monitors the flow of spam and virus infected email messages on behalf of millions of corporate and public sector users across the UK. For more information, visit or call 0870 141 7070.

About Email Systems:

Email Systems offers a comprehensive range of best-of-breed email management and protection services that are available either individually or as a modular package for Enterprise, ISP and OEM customers. These include archiving, image scanning and encryption, in addition to core anti-spam and anti-virus services. Email Systems’ web-based solutions ensure that clients need not download or manage software on their PC or server, offering complete peace of mind with no effort required. Email Systems is continually developing technical partnerships with global market leaders, such as Commtouch, which offers unique Recurrent Pattern Detection (RPD) technology to analyse large volumes of Internet traffic in real time, protecting customers from the first seconds of a spam or virus outbreak. Email Systems has offices in the United Kingdom, France and Sweden.

Don't miss