NEWS FROM THE LAB - Saturday, September 18, 2004

Sasser author hired by a software company Posted by Mikko @ 16:19 GMT

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Sven Jaschen, the author of 30 different variants of Netsky and four different variants of Sasser worm, has been hired. German security company Securepoint hired him to work as a developer for security softwares such as firewalls.

I'm sure most people have serious doubts about a security company hiring a virus writer - and for a reason. No doubt Securepoint will have to explain their decision over and over again.

But in a way I'm happy Sven gets a second chance. After all, we really should try to rehabilitate criminals to enter normal working life again and to became a productive part of the society. Just like in real life many companies avoid hiring ex-convicts but everybody agrees somebody should do it. So in that sense we should be glad that Securepoint is doing this. I guess.

Of course, we here at F-Secure wouldn't hire him.

And we should remember that although Sven Jaschen was bad, he wasn't that bad. He apparently really saw himself as some kind of Robin Hood: writing viruses to attack other viruses written by professional viruswriters working with spammers. Sven's viruses removed viruses like Bagle and Mydoom and uninstalled spam proxies such as Mitglieder from infected computers. But of course, his viruses also caused huge amounts of damage - such as Sasser taking down X-Ray machines in hospitals in Sweden.

So, we believe Mr. Jaschen was more clueless than malicious.