New computer virus "Worm_Gone.A" spreading through e-mail
5th December 2001 (Utusan Express)

KUALA LUMPUR Dec 5 - A new high-risk computer virus, dubbed "Worm_Gone.A" (Goner), was confirmed to have been attacking the Internet since last night.

Since making the scene, the highly infectious virus was reported to have hit almost 17,000 workstations and 30,000 Microsoft Outlook users globally.

The rapid spread of the Goner bug is said to rival the outbreak of the Love Bug virus which caused millions of dollars in damage in April last year.

Trend Micro country sales manager Wong Joon Hoong said today that the pattern of the virus was detected in this region at 10.30 last night and could be categorised as a high risk due to its fast-spreading nature.

"Like other computer worms, Goner spreads through Microsoft's popular Outlook e-mail programme. The file arrives as an attachment to an e-mail with the subject line of 'Hi'. The e-mail contained in this virus will read as 'How are you? When I saw this screen saver, I immediately thought about you I am in a harry (sic), I promise you will love it!'" he said in an interview here today.

Wong said that if a recipient opened the attached file, called 'goner.scr', the computer would appear to install a screen saver until a bogus error message apparently stopped the process and the virus would have attached itself and sent it to all the e-mail addresses in the Outlook programme.

He said the virus was also capable of spreading through a popular instant message programme known as ICQ as well as MIRC chatting.

Goner would begin to delete any security files, including the anti-virus software, and install itself within the Windows operating system so that whenever the infected computer was restarted, the virus would spread unless it was removed, he said.

"It will be compromising the security in your computer and will look for the list of security products in the system and turn off all the sources of the security programme. And reinstalation needs to be done," he added.

Wong said his company had created updated virus pattern files No. 177 and 977 to detect and remove this worm.

On prevention, he said the users could protect their computers from being infected by downloading the pattern file from Trend Micro's Web Site at

He also advised the company's customers to use Trend Micro's interscan and Scan Main e-Manager content to block attachment to "goner.scr".

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