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20 Jun 2001

Kournikova suspect to appear in court


Reports from the Netherlands state that Jan de Wit, the suspected author of the Anna Kournikova worm (also known as VBS/SST-A) which infected computers around the world in February 2001, is to be prosecuted.

Jan de Wit is expected to appear in court on September 12, and if found guilty could face a sentence of up to six months in prison or a fine of up to 100,000 guilders.

The Anna Kournikova worm arrived in email inboxes pretending to be a picture of the popular Russian tennis player, but in fact contained a computer virus.

"Virus writing is not a game," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos. "Computer viruses can cause untold damage and spread indiscriminately. Virus writers should take this as a warning - the authorities are taking their activities more seriously and are prepared to take decisive action. If you don't want to end up in court, don't write and distribute viruses."

Sophos recommends companies protect themselves with a consolidated solution which can control network access and defend against the threats of spam, hackers, spyware and viruses.

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