Threat Explorer

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13 February 2007
Also Known As:
VBS.LoveLetter.Variant, I-Worm.Loveletter, VBS/LoveLetter@MM
Systems Affected:

VBS.LoveLetter.CA spreads using Microsoft Outlook. It attempts to email itself to all contacts that have not yet been targeted by the worm. The payload of this worm overwrites files of certain extensions with its own code.

NOTE: Virus definitions prior to March 2, 2001 detected this as VBS.LoveLetter.Variant.

The subject is one of the following:
The body of the email is one of the following:
  • [String of 10 random characters]
  • [No Body Text]

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version 29 September 2000
  • Latest Rapid Release version 08 August 2016 revision 023
  • Initial Daily Certified version 29 September 2000
  • Latest Daily Certified version 09 August 2016 revision 001
  • Initial Weekly Certified release date pending
Click here for a more detailed description of Rapid Release and Daily Certified virus definitions.

When executed, VBS.LoveLetter.CA copies itself to \System\Linux32.vbs, Windows\Reload.vbs, and \System\[Random File Name].vbs.

The registry is modified so that when Microsoft Internet Explorer starts, it downloads three additional files. These files are then integrated into the system so that they start automatically.

After downloading the additional files it resets the Internet Explorer start page to a pornographic Web site.

VBS.LoveLetter.CA searches out specific files on all available drives, including mapped network volumes, and overwrites them with its own code. Files with the following extensions are targeted:
  • .css
  • .hta
  • .jpeg
  • .jpg
  • .js
  • .jse
  • .mp2
  • .mp3
  • .sct
  • .vbe
  • .vbs
  • .wsh

If the date is December 25, the following message appears:

Att. [random word] (REDRUM)

An attempt is then made to remove all network drives.


Symantec Security Response encourages all users and administrators to adhere to the following basic security "best practices":

  • Use a firewall to block all incoming connections from the Internet to services that should not be publicly available. By default, you should deny all incoming connections and only allow services you explicitly want to offer to the outside world.
  • Enforce a password policy. Complex passwords make it difficult to crack password files on compromised computers. This helps to prevent or limit damage when a computer is compromised.
  • Ensure that programs and users of the computer use the lowest level of privileges necessary to complete a task. When prompted for a root or UAC password, ensure that the program asking for administration-level access is a legitimate application.
  • Disable AutoPlay to prevent the automatic launching of executable files on network and removable drives, and disconnect the drives when not required. If write access is not required, enable read-only mode if the option is available.
  • Turn off file sharing if not needed. If file sharing is required, use ACLs and password protection to limit access. Disable anonymous access to shared folders. Grant access only to user accounts with strong passwords to folders that must be shared.
  • Turn off and remove unnecessary services. By default, many operating systems install auxiliary services that are not critical. These services are avenues of attack. If they are removed, threats have less avenues of attack.
  • If a threat exploits one or more network services, disable, or block access to, those services until a patch is applied.
  • Always keep your patch levels up-to-date, especially on computers that host public services and are accessible through the firewall, such as HTTP, FTP, mail, and DNS services.
  • Configure your email server to block or remove email that contains file attachments that are commonly used to spread threats, such as .vbs, .bat, .exe, .pif and .scr files.
  • Isolate compromised computers quickly to prevent threats from spreading further. Perform a forensic analysis and restore the computers using trusted media.
  • Train employees not to open attachments unless they are expecting them. Also, do not execute software that is downloaded from the Internet unless it has been scanned for viruses. Simply visiting a compromised Web site can cause infection if certain browser vulnerabilities are not patched.
  • If Bluetooth is not required for mobile devices, it should be turned off. If you require its use, ensure that the device's visibility is set to "Hidden" so that it cannot be scanned by other Bluetooth devices. If device pairing must be used, ensure that all devices are set to "Unauthorized", requiring authorization for each connection request. Do not accept applications that are unsigned or sent from unknown sources.
  • For further information on the terms used in this document, please refer to the Security Response glossary.

Delete all files detected as VBS.LoveLetter.CA.
Writeup By: Andre Post