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31 May 2006

First virus for StarOffice poses no serious threat

Silvia Saint
The virus tries to download a picture of porn star Silvia Saint.

Experts at SophosLabs™, Sophos's global network of virus, spyware and spam analysis centers, have announced the discovery of the first malware for StarOffice.

The virus, which has been dubbed Stardust, is the first example of malware written in the StarOffice macro language. Macro viruses have most frequently troubled users of Microsoft Office since the discovery of the Concept virus in 1995 which infected Microsoft Word files, but have rarely been seen for non-Microsoft applications.

"The Stardust virus doesn't appear to work very well, and as such poses as close-to-zero threat to computer users as is imaginable," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos. "It appears that someone attempted to write this virus purely to prove that such a thing was possible, rather than with any serious motive."

Sophos experts report that an image which the virus attempts to download contains a photograph of a porn star, with the message "Vxers love you!!"

"Clearly whoever wrote this virus is an ardent fan of the Czech porn actress, Silvia Saint," continued Cluley. "The word 'Vxers' is a frequently used phrase in the computer underground for those who are interested in writing and distributing viruses. Miss Saint, however, is probably not similarly attracted to people who sit in their back bedrooms writing malicious computer code."

About Sophos

More than 100 million users in 150 countries rely on Sophos as the best protection against complex threats and data loss. Sophos is committed to providing complete security solutions that are simple to deploy, manage, and use and that deliver the industry's lowest total cost of ownership. Sophos offers award-winning encryption, endpoint security, web, email, mobile and network security solutions backed by SophosLabs - a global network of threat intelligence centers.

Sophos is headquartered in Boston, US and Oxford, UK. More information is available at www.sophos.com.