Some music and ebook files are protected by digital rights management (DRM) systems. These files are effectively locked to particular devices so that they can only be played on those devices and can't be copied and shared.
Malware can use the same technique. Essentially, it locks itself to a particular system by encrypting portions of its binary using specific attributes of the infected system to generate a key. That means that once it has infected a system, the malware will only run on that machine and can't be copied and run on another.
The purpose of this is to make it much harder for antivirus vendors to take a sample of the code from an infected machine and run it on their own systems – to analyze it and, ultimately, produce an antivirus signature for it. Virus authors such as those behind the Gauss Trojan, which was discovered in August 2012, and the Flashback Trojan in 2011 have already used this self-defense technique, and it's one that's likely to become common in the future, the report suggests.
What you can do to mitigate the threat: Enterprises should deploy antivirus products, which offer effective alternatives to signature-based protection, such as behavioral protection and file-reputation-based systems.
The security threat landscape changes constantly, with malicious hackers developing new ways to compromise your systems as older vulnerabilities are discovered and patched. So it's important to be aware of the threats to enterprise security that are coming over the horizon and heading this way.
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