Printer Friendly Page

Discovered: September 27, 2002
Updated: February 13, 2007 11:53:26 AM
Also Known As: WORM_CIANAM.A [Trend]
Type: Worm
Systems Affected: Windows

W32.Cianam.Worm may spread through the mIRC and KaZaA file-sharing networks. It is also a mass-mailing worm that uses Microsoft Outlook to send itself to all contacts in the Microsoft Outlook Address Book. The worm is written using the Microsoft Visual Basic programming language and is compressed with UPX.

The email will contain a randomly chosen subject line and a file attachment with the extension .exe, .com, .jpg, .mpg, .txt, .doc, .mp3, .asp, .htm, or .php.

Antivirus Protection Dates

  • Initial Rapid Release version September 27, 2002
  • Latest Rapid Release version September 28, 2010 revision 054
  • Initial Daily Certified version September 27, 2002
  • Latest Daily Certified version September 28, 2010 revision 036
  • Initial Weekly Certified release date September 30, 2002

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

Writeup By: Yana Liu

Discovered: September 27, 2002
Updated: February 13, 2007 11:53:26 AM
Also Known As: WORM_CIANAM.A [Trend]
Type: Worm
Systems Affected: Windows

When W32.Cianam.Worm runs, it does the following:

It displays this message:

It adds the value

Join.A <the worm's file path and name>

to the registry key


so that the worm runs each time that you start Windows.

It copies itself as C:\Cool_File.exe. This file is given the hidden and read-only attributes.

It searches for the folders

  • C:\Program Files\KaZaA\My Shared Folder
  • C:\KaZaA\My Shared Folder

If either of the folders exists, the worm copies itself to them as
  • MSN Crack.exe
  • MSN Hack.exe
  • ICQ Password Hack.exe
  • HotMail Hack.exe
  • SpiderMan-PC-Game-v2 FullDownloader.exe
  • ICQ Hack.exe
  • Windows (All Versions) KeyGen.exe

The worm then searches for the following folders:
  • C:\mIRC
  • C:\mIRC32
  • C:\Program Files\mIRC
  • C:\Program Files\mIRC32

If any of the folders exists, the worm creates a file named Script.ini file in those folders, so that the worm can send itself to other mIRC users. The worm is named Cool_File.exe.

The worm uses Microsoft Outlook to send itself to all contacts in the Outlook Address Book. The email has the following characteristics:

Subject: The subject is one of the following:
  • Why are you so angry at me??
  • Why are you so sad?
  • Why are you so useless??
  • Why are you so hateful???
  • Why are you so playful??
  • Funny Tool for you...
  • Funny Song for you...
  • Funny Program for you...
  • Funny Document for you...
  • Funny Application for you...
  • Funny TextFile for you...
  • Funny Joke for you...
  • Funny Website for you...
  • Funny Tip for you...
  • Funny Thing for you...
  • We need to talk...!
  • What's the problem?
  • How are you??
  • You need help?
  • What's happening???
  • RE: Why you not replying??
  • Need help!
  • Check this out!

Message: The message body is one of the following:
  • .I tried to reach you at MSN Messenger but you weren't online! I got something really' important to tell you! Check the attached file (You'll find what I wanted to tell you there!) Ok. Reply as soon as possible!
  • .Where have you been all the time??? I tried to call you but you weren't home! Anyway, see the attached file! It's important!
  • .You said you needed help huh? Well I got the solution for your problem! Just open the attached file and see what's in it ;)
  • .I need your help! I'm in a very difficault position right now. I can't decide how good the file is from rate 0 To 5! I need your opinion on it, so check it out (It's attached to this message!) and tell me what you think from rate 0 To 5!
  • .Why are you so angry at me? What have I done to you?? I only want you to check this file out; It describes my opinion about you. Please check it, you won't be dissapointed ;) Hope to hear from you soon :)

Attachment: The attachment name is randomly selected from the following list:
  • Funny
  • Nice_File
  • Cool_File
  • Nice Tool
  • Funny Toy
  • Funny Clip
  • Nice Song
  • Interesting
  • ReadMe
  • Information

with one these extensions:
  • .exe
  • .com
  • .jpg
  • .mpg
  • .txt
  • .doc
  • .mp3
  • .asp
  • .htm
  • .php

An example attachment name is Nice Song.txt.

The worm then attempts to drop a file named C:\Winexe.scr, which is detected as W32.Badtrans.B@mm by Symantec antivirus products.


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.

Writeup By: Yana Liu

Discovered: September 27, 2002
Updated: February 13, 2007 11:53:26 AM
Also Known As: WORM_CIANAM.A [Trend]
Type: Worm
Systems Affected: Windows

NOTE: These instructions are for all current and recent Symantec antivirus products, including the Symantec AntiVirus and Norton AntiVirus product lines.

  1. Update the virus definitions.
  2. Run a full system scan, and delete all files that are detected as W32.Cianam.Worm or W32.Badtrans.B@mm.
  3. Delete the value

    Join.A <the worm's file path and name>

    from the registry key

For details on how to do this, read the following instructions.

To update the virus definitions:
All virus definitions receive full quality assurance testing by Symantec Security Response before being posted to our servers. There are two ways to obtain the most recent virus definitions:
  • Run LiveUpdate, which is the easiest way to obtain virus definitions. These virus definitions are posted to the LiveUpdate servers one time each week (usually Wednesdays) unless there is a major virus outbreak. To determine whether definitions for this threat are available by LiveUpdate, look at the Virus Definitions (LiveUpdate) line at the top of this write-up.
  • Download the definitions using the Intelligent Updater. Intelligent Updater virus definitions are posted on U.S. business days (Monday through Friday). They must be downloaded from the Symantec Security Response Web site and installed manually. To determine whether definitions for this threat are available by the Intelligent Updater, look at the Virus Definitions (Intelligent Updater) line at the top of this write-up.

    Intelligent Updater virus definitions are available here. For detailed instructions on how to download and install the Intelligent Updater virus definitions from the Symantec Security Response Web site, click here.

To scan for and delete the infected files:
  1. Start your Symantec antivirus program, and make sure that it is configured to scan all files.
  2. Run a full system scan.
  3. If any files are detected as infected with W32.Cianam.Worm or W32.Badtrans.B@mm, click Delete.

To delete the value that the worm added to the registry:

CAUTION : Symantec strongly recommends that you back up the registry before you make any changes to it. Incorrect changes to the registry can result in permanent data loss or corrupted files. Modify only the keys that are specified. Read the document How to make a backup of the Windows registry for instructions.
  1. Click Start, and click Run. The Run dialog box appears.
  2. Type regedit and then click OK. The Registry Editor opens.
  3. Navigate to the key

  4. In the right pane, locate and delete these values:

    Join.A <the worm's file path and name>
  5. Exit the Registry Editor.

Writeup By: Yana Liu