New computer virus strikes mainland

PUBLISHED : Monday, 29 October, 2001, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 29 October, 2001, 12:00am

I-WORM.klez, a vicious new computer virus identified in China last Friday, is spreading across the mainland.

No tally of the number of casualties is available so far.

The worm was believed to have originated on the mainland and had popped up in Beijing and Shanghai and in Guangdong and Fujian provinces, said the National Computer
Virus Emergency Response Centre, which is run by the Ministry of Public Security.

According to Monday's edition of Beijing Youth Daily, the national computer network of a Beijing-based logistics company crashed because of the virus.

The Public Security Ministry's crisis centre has given the virus the name 'Resume Virus' because one of the sentences it contains is 'I want a good job, I must support my

According to the centre's online assistance message, the e-mail containing the virus has words like 'Hello', 'How are you?', 'We want peace' and 'Some advice on your shortcomings' as its subjects.

The centre has alerted mainland computer users to be cautious when opening suspicious e-mails and is telling people to try to reduce the amount of e-mail they send until a concrete solution can be found.

The virus could spread through the Internet or Intranet, even by disk, according to the centre.

It was similar to the Nimda and Sircam computer viruses and would automatically search for e-mail addresses and send out infected e-mail randomly to other users because
of security holes in the Microsoft Windows operating system and its Outlook e-mail system, said an anti-virus specialist with Beijing Jiangmin New Sci-tech, which posted virus-related
information on its site,

Jiangmin said the virus could automatically duplicate or enlarge some files on an infected hard drive until they overloaded the computer, causing it to crash.

On the 13th of various months, the virus could also activate itself automatically and destroy all files on a hard drive.

Both Jiangmin and a rival company, Beijing the Rising, claimed they had updated their anti-virus software so that it could seek out and destroy the virus.

Computer virus experts also suggested that people log on to the Microsoft site to download the software fix that plugged the security gaps.