Computers in at least 10 Fortune 500 companies have been infected recently by an annoying but only mildly dangerous Christmas-themed virus that security experts are calling Navidad.
The virus, which affects computers using Microsoft’s Windows operating system, arrives as a reply when a user sends an e-mail to an infected computer. The attachment, called Navidad.exe, is mainly in Spanish, and antivirus experts believe the virus came from South America.
An antivirus researcher at the security company McAfee.com said they had seen at least 100 samples over the last four days, including at least 10 Fortune 500 companies.
When a person opens the attachment - something experts always warn against unless the user knows what the attachment is – a message in Spanish reads ‘Never press this button’. If the button is pressed, a message says: “Feliz Navidad. Unfortunately you have given in to temptation and will lose your computer.”
The computer, however, is not damaged. But the virus does place on the computer’s desktop an icon that looks like an eye, which freezes most programs.