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What is Flame?

Flame is a highly sophisticated, malicious program that is actively being used as a cyber weapon to target entities in several countries.
Discovered by Kaspersky Lab’s experts – during an investigation that was prompted by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) – Flame is designed to carry out cyber espionage. It can steal valuable information – including but not limited to computer display contents, information about targeted systems, stored files, contact data and even audio conversations. Its complexity and functionality exceed those of all other known cyber weapons.

Flame is the largest cyber weapon discovered to date – and it was designed in a way that made it nearly impossible to track down. Whereas conventional malware is built to be small and hidden, Flame’s sheer size allowed it to remain undiscovered. Flame infects computers by using sophisticated techniques that were previously used by only one cyber weapon: Stuxnet. Although it appears that Flame has been operational since March 2010, no security software had discovered it... until Kaspersky Lab.

“Flame can easily be described as one of the most complex threats ever discovered. It’s big and incredibly sophisticated. It pretty much redefines the notion of cyber war and cyber espionage.”

Alexander Gostev
Kaspersky Lab Expert

The threat

Flame’s victims range from individuals to specific state-related organisations or educational institutions. Flame is a sophisticated, malicious program that is capable of stealing large volumes of data… and many different types of information.

Kaspersky Lab’s experts are continuing to analyse Flame. Over the coming days and weeks, Kaspersky Lab will be updating a blog about its findings.

If I’m concerned… how can I secure my PCs?

The latest versions of Kaspersky Lab’s business and consumer anti-malware products detect and cure all known variants of Flame, categorized as Worm.Win32.Flame.

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