Worm Squirms Through Google's Orkut

A fast moving worm is squirming though Google's Orkut social network, adding hundreds of thousands of users to an Orkut community created by a Brazilian hacker. The worm, which first appeared on Dec. 19, has been spreading through Orkut's Scrapbook system at a rapid pace, infecting more than 650,000 users in the space of a few hours.

According to an alert from anti-virus specialist Trend Micro, infection starts when an Orkut user is sent an e-mail telling them that they have a new Scrapbook entry. Logging into Orkut, the victim is greeted with Portuguese-language text that reads: "2008 vem ai... que ele comece mto bem para vc." This translates to "2008 is coming...I wish that it begins quite well for you". No interaction is necessary. Simply looking at the scrap starts the infection sequence," says Trend Micro researcher Robert McArdle.

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