mailing list archives
Re: Re: New Virus?
From: Nick FitzGerald <nick () virus-l demon co uk>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 2004 23:54:45 +1300
Brian Eckman <eckman () umn edu> to me:
First off, Nick, thanks a bunch for sharing that info with the list.
FYI, I sent in a sample to NAI using the above address. I got an
autoreply that it was received, then another autoreply that it was not a
known threat and that it was being forwarded to an AVERT researcher. So,
I deleted the backdoor trojan, as I had already submitted it to the
company we have a site license with. (I sent it into NAI as the computer
that was infected with it had McAfee on it.)
Later, I got an E-mail that they had a virus gateway strip the sample
out of my message as "potentially unsafe", and gave me further
instructions. They suggested using http://www.webimmune.net and/or
zipping it and password protecting it, using the password "infected".
Yes -- that is a tad more clue than seems reasonable to assume on the
part of a "typical infected uswer"...
I imagine I'm not the only one amused by the fact that they want you to
send malware to them in a password protected Zip file, (in light of
recent Bagle variants :). ...
Actually, that has historically been a defensive measure to get samples
_out_ from the sender's machine. AV researchers started to receive too
many messages that should have had suspicious attachments sent by
helpful customers and the like but that had obviously had the
attachments removed (or otherwise munged) by intermediary virus-
... I also find it oddly amusing (being that I am
not a paying customer of theirs, and that only a few hundred or so
people on my campus likely are) that they would filter potentially
harmful attachments that were sent to a virus submission E-mail address.
Yes -- that is prize gormlessness...
I'll have to tell the user to use our site licensed AV software instead
if they want to detect this threat in the future. (Actually, it is
probably still in my sent items, so I probably can comply with their
request. I'm just a bit perturbed that they acknowledged receipt of it,
then they deleted it. (Paying customers might want to take note that
they had their hands on something that a competitor identified as a
backdoor trojan, but NAI still cannot detect it because they filtered
E-mail sent via a virus submission address.)
Just thought I'd share my experience. Perhaps it will save someone else
the frustration that I had.
Indeed -- this is one of those near-comical things that you hope only
happens to "the other guy".
I can imagine several "normal" administrative decision-making processes
inside NAI (paralleling those of many other companies!) that make
complete sense in light of recent developments regarding straight and
password-protected .ZIP files, but which are quite ludicrous if you
step back and realize that part of the business model underlying this
company's moment-to-moment operation _requires_ that it be able to
easily and efficiently receive (possibly) "undesirable" files from
anyone, anywhere on the planet...
Computer Virus Consulting Ltd.
Ph/FAX: +64 3 3529854
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