Kaspersky Labs has detected Bizex, a new Internet worm which caused the first global epidemic among users of ICQ, the Internet instant messaging system. At the moment, messages about infection are coming in from almost all corners of the globe. A preliminary estimate is that approximately 50,000 are infected.

Bizex has a range of payloads, all of which are dangerous, & which can lead to the leaking of confidential information. Specifically, the worm scans the infected computer, & harvests information on payment systems which are installed. Then, unnoticed by the user, it sends these details to a remote anonymous server. Additionally, Bizex intercepts information transmitted by HTTPS (an encrypted communications protocol, which is used, in particular, to transmit financial transactions) & also log in details for a range of email systems e.g. Yahoo. This information is also sent to the remote anonymous server.

Would you like to know more? PivX points out that Qwik-Fix protects (To some degree at least) against this, though be sure to check Kaspersky for pertinent info.

It should be noted that the worm only attacks original ICQ programs (with the exception of Web ICQ), and alternative instant messaging systems, such as Miranda and Trillian, are immune