A worm that prevents certain applications from working properly has been detected by Webroot.
Andrew Brandt, threat expert at Webroot, described the Worm-Shiv as ‘obnoxious', claiming that ‘there isn't anything especially technically avant-garde or advanced about the worm, nor was it especially difficult to detect or remove. It just exhibits behaviour that, to be blunt, is about as annoying as it possibly can be'.
Brandt explained that the infection process starts with a small self-extracting RAR archive executable that when run, drops and executes another .exe file, which in turn drops and executes yet another .exe file.
It then puts a copy of a file named wsock32.dll into every single folder on the hard drive and the code is designed to prevent certain applications from working properly.
Brandt said: “For example, the brilliant freeware tool Process Explorer is automatically shut down the moment the mouse crosses the border into the program's window. In some cases, the worm also modifies some registry settings that turn off certain columns in the Process Explorer window — important ones, like the one that shows the program's name.
“But even worse, the worm has been engineered to mess with the application window of many anti-virus products, including ours. Not only does the worm make the quarantine button disappear, but then the real shenanigans begin, when you move the mouse pointer anywhere within the program's active window, it immediately snaps the title bar over the mouse pointer, which then sticks to the pointer.
“If you move the mouse too quickly when it's “stuck” like that, the mouse pointer just slips off the title bar, leaving the window half off the screen.”
Webroot recommends using a keyboard shortcut for the quarantine feature, where you can just hit the Alt-Q keys instead of trying in vain, over and over, to click the button.
Brandt claimed that the creator ‘will think of something even more annoying in the future, but for now, we can all breathe a little easier knowing this Sisyphean nonsense is contained — at least, for the moment.'