In the depths of the Bitdefender Virus Labs sits trapped in their secure network a most disturbing virus. Recently discovered is a new evolutionary branch of the computer virus. A virus able to infect other types of Malwares – Trojans and Worms -, turning them into its zombie slaves. Once hybridized the new zombie is controlled by the virus, with all of the zombies functions becoming available to the controlling virus.
Bitdefender Virus Labs have observed this behaviour in the Win32.Virtob Virus. They found that the Virtob virus was able to take control of the Win32.Worm.Rimecud worm. Once in control it took advantage of the replication and transport functions of the Rimecud worm. If the worm is able to spread it then carries the Virtob virus with it, with the combined features from both pieces of malware able to inflict a lot more damage than the creators of either had intended.
In order to study the phenomenon Bitdefender Virus Lab concentrated on the Win32.Worm.Rimecud -Win32.Virtob pair. With an initial study finding that no less than 40,000 such malware symbioses out of a sample pool of 10 million files existed. The phenomenon is now being seen more often in Virus Labs around the world, possibly indicating that the creators of virus’s are now taking advantage of the zombie mechanism.