Scold is a basic mass mailer discovered on the 11th of December 2003. It will send simple emails. The worm uses very simple tricks to try to avoid generic and heuristic detection by scrambling obvious text strings.

Automatic action

Removal of the file suffices to eliminate this threat from the system.

Suspect a file is incorrectly detected (a False Positive)?

A False Positive is when a file is incorrectly detected as harmful, usually because its code or behavior resembles known harmful programs. A False Positive will usually be fixed in a subsequent database update without any action needed on your part. If you wish, you may also:

  • Check for the latest database updates

    First check if your F-Secure security program is using the latest detection database updates, then try scanning the file again.

  • Submit a sample

    After checking, if you still believe the file is incorrectly detected, you can submit a sample of it for re-analysis.

    NOTE If the file was moved to quarantine, you need to collect the file from quarantine before you can submit it.

  • Exclude a file from further scanning

    If you are certain that the file is safe and want to continue using it, you can exclude it from further scanning by the F-Secure security product.

    Note You need administrative rights to change the settings.

For more Support

Knowledge Base

Find the latest advice in our Community Knowledge Base.

User Guide

See the user guide for your product on the Help Center.

Contact Support

Chat with or call an expert for help.

Submit a sample

Submit a file or URL for further analysis.

Technical Details

This worm was written in Visual Basic and packed with UPX. The packed executable has suffered no later modifications to make the unpacking process more difficult.

The size of the packed executable is 28160 bytes. Once unpacked it grows up to 61440 bytes long.

The worm author tried to avoid general detection methods by scrambling the main strings in the worm's code. Some of the text strings are reversed and other are written character by character.

Installation to system

The worm will copy itself to the Windows' System folder as "Warm.scr", whose path will be obtained by means of the GetSpecialFolder Method.

It will add an entry in the Windows Registry under:


to point to the "Warm.scr" file, so it's run as soon as Windows starts.

Spreading in email.

The subject is one of the following:

When It's Cold Outside She Gives Me Warm Inside
Fw:When It's Cold Outside She Gives Me Warm Inside
Re:When It's Cold Outside She Gives Me Warm Inside

The email body will contain text from the following list:

You will love this cute picture.
Enjoy this great picture.
Don't miss this cool picture.

Followed by some text like:

Free Online Virus Scan.
No viruses or suspicious files were found in the attached file.

The attachment will have the extension ".SCR"

It will send messages to all the addresses in the user's address book. It will also look for addresses in HTML files present in the computer's HD.