Stoned.Empire.Monkey

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Updated: February 13, 2007 11:33:24 AM
Also Known As: Monkey
Type: Virus


Stoned.Empire.Monkey is a virus with no currently known strains that cause intentional permanent damage. However, a Stoned.Empire.Monkey infection is a major inconvenience.

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version December 18, 2000
  • Latest Rapid Release version December 18, 2000
  • Initial Daily Certified version December 18, 2000
  • Latest Daily Certified version December 18, 2000

Click here for a more detailed description of Rapid Release and Daily Certified virus definitions.

Updated: February 13, 2007 11:33:24 AM
Also Known As: Monkey
Type: Virus


If you boot from a floppy disk on an infected computer, the system will not find your hard drive. Carried only on diskettes, Stoned.Empire.Monkey spreads easily to systems without protection. Stoned.Empire.Monkey is a memory resident infector of the master boot record on hard drives and the boot sector on floppy disks. When the virus is in memory, it re-routes any boot record access to a copy of the original boot sector.

Stoned.Empire.Monkey encrypts the partition table (an essential part of the system area), moves the original to a different location on the hard drive, and then takes the place of the real partition table. For the system to read the real partition (and see the drive), Stoned.Empire.Monkey must be active in memory. If you boot from a clean floppy disk, thus avoiding the virus, your system cannot access the hard drive by normal means.

Although the Stoned.Empire.Monkey virus was not designed to damage data, it writes to any available disk, regardless of format. This can causes loss of data and formatting on non-DOS disks.

Recommendations

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.

Updated: February 13, 2007 11:33:24 AM
Also Known As: Monkey
Type: Virus


Norton AntiVirus has provided detection for this virus since 1992.

If this virus has run on an unprotected computer and damaged the partition table, you my be able to rebuild it with a utility such as Norton Disk Doctor.