Originally posted on January
Is Your Computer Safe
From The Kid Next Door?
Recently I was
invited to a clients house in Burlingame California for a computer
checkup. They were complaining about the Windows 98 Gateway G6-300
not booting up. The first thing I did was scan for viruses but
I didn't find any. I restored their system and delivered it back
to them 3 days later. While restoring data from a backup my Norton
Antivirus software kicked in finding a Backdoor Polymorphic Virus
in some files on their hard drive.
the names of these files I did a search on the net and found
a hacker group called HackerErz Edge that these files were associated
with. I continued my search to find that on the clients computer,
there was a log file in the AOL Instant Messenger directory for
a screen name of one of the people that their daughter was communicating
with that matched the name of the virus file. I put 2 and 2 together
and with a bit more investigating found the person responsible
for the virus attack.
Per the FBI's
request, I am not allowed to post the childs name here because
he is a minor, but he uses AOL Instant Messenger and several
others to conduct malicious attacks on other computer users,
mainly other kids from his school.
He should know
that if he is responcible for infecting another PC from across
state lines, that makes it a federal offense and federal agencies
take this matter very seriously.
The attacks were
made by using AOL Instant Messenger. He would contact some of
his friends via their screen names, start a conversation, then
suggest that they accept a download of MP3 or funny picture from
him. The user, trusting him would receive the file, click on
it and then the computer would start acting up if not disabling
Many people were
infected and according to several young people I spoke to in
the Burlingame area said he has a history and reputation of infecting
other kids computers and harassing them.
of virus infections in America most likely come from kids like
this who have nothing better to do than join hacker clubs and
revel in the experience of disabling computer users across the
US. MIS departments employ armies of technicians to combat these
trouble makers costing corporate America billions on preventative
and reactive measures.
The feds have
a website at http://www.nipc.gov/
that you can use to report hackers like this. You can also email
the agency at email@example.com.
Stay tuned here
for more information on this investigation, I am sure it will
get more interesting.
Report a Virus Attack
Virus Reporting: Important
Computer Emergency Response Team
Network Associates: McAfee Public
Symantec: Genevieve Haldeman,
Public Relations Manager
Trend Micro: Susan Orbuch, Communications