Security software company Sophos has alerted users to an e-mail virus disguised as a breaking news bulletin, covering anything from the alleged death of Michael Jackson to conspiracy theories about the death of Pope John Paul II earlier this year.
The virus also carries fake stories about the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden and even the supposed arrest of the author of the MyDoom worm.
The new W32/Kedebe-F worm spreads itself via e-mail using a wide variety of different subject lines and message bodies.
Users who fall for it and launch the attached file risk disabling their security software and passing the infection onto other computer users via their e-mail address books.
“Hackers are constantly trying to dupe computer users into running malicious code with the promise of breaking news stories,” said Graham Cluley, Sophos senior technology consultant. "Everyone should exercise extreme caution, run up-to-date anti-virus software and ensure they never run unsolicited e-mail attachments.”
Sophos said W32/Kedebe-F was not spreading rapidly and says up-to-date anti-virus software should stop it in its tracks.