PandaLabs Reveals Most Unique Viruses Of 2012 In Its Annual Virus YearbookThese viruses stand out from the more than 24 million new strains of malware that emerged
ORLANDO, Fla., Dec. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- PandaLabs, the antimalware laboratory of Panda Security, the Cloud Security Company, has published its Virus Yearbook for 2012, outlining its picks for the most unique viruses of the past year.
Rather than a ranking of the most widespread viruses, or those that have caused most infections, these viruses are ones that deserve mention for standing out from the more than 24 million new strains of malware that emerged.
-- Police virus: This strain of malware caused most headaches for users and
IT departments alike. It purports to show a message from the police
telling users that their computer has been blocked - which it has -
because they have supposedly downloaded illegal material. To recover
their systems, users are asked to pay a fine. The most recent versions
even show images taken with the user's webcam, making the scam all the
-- Flame: A close relative of Stuxnet, Flame is one of the most powerful
cyber-war tools created so far, and infections have been focused
primarily in the Middle East.
-- Flashback: A bot that breaks away from the norm of infecting Windows and
targets Apple systems and attacks thousands of Mac computers around the
world. Since it appeared, Mac users are no longer quite as relaxed about
security as they once were.
-- Zeus: A Trojan that steals information from users of online banking
services. This family of malware has been known for some time, yet it
continues to spread. However this year new variants were detected, which
in addition to infecting computers, compromise security on smartphones
(Android, BlackBerry, Symbian), targeting those banks that send
information via cellphone to customers as an additional security
-- Koobface: The most mendacious malware of the year, spent the whole of
2012 spreading endless lies on social networks in order to infect users.
In one attack it related a spurious story about President Obama having
punched someone who racially insulted him. So beware of sensational
stories on social media, this is a favorite trick of cyber-crooks.
-- BlackHole Exploit kit: One of the most popular kits for creating malware
over the last year. It exploits numerous security holes to install and
uses all types of exploits, particularly Java and Adobe.
-- DarkAngle: A fake antivirus that poses as Panda CloudAntivirus. It takes
advantage of the renown of Panda Security's free cloud antivirus to
infect as many computers as possible.
-- Ainslot.L: When it infects, the Ainslot.L bot scans computers and
removes any other bots it finds.
-- Kuluoz: A worm that refers to things supposedly bought only and then
infects computers. The worm arrives in an email that looks as though it
has been sent from FedEx, and tells users they have a parcel to collect.
More information is available in the PandaLabs Blog.
Since 1990, PandaLabs, Panda Security's malware research laboratory, has been working to detect and classify malware in order to protect consumers and companies against new Internet threats. To do so, PandaLabs uses Collective Intelligence, a cloud-based proprietary system that leverages the knowledge gathered from Panda's user community to automatically detect, analyze and classify the more than 73,000 new malware strains that appear every day. This automated malware classification is complemented through the work of an international team with researchers specialized each in a specific type of malware (viruses, worms, Trojans, spyware and other attacks) to provide global coverage. Get more information about PandaLabs and subscribe to its blog news feed at http://www.pandalabs.com. Follow Panda on Twitter at http://twitter.com/Panda_Security and Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/PandaUSA.