Other issues include the potential for IM clients to perform file transfers, causing Trojan horses, back doors, viruses203 and worms204 to be copied from user to user, particularly if you allow users to connect to external IM users on untrustworthy machines.
You can somewhat protect yourself against IM viruses through the use of an IM-specific anti-virus program like BitDefender by SOFTWIN, currently available for popular IM platforms like ICQ, MSN Messenger and mIRC.205 If youre interested in IM security for different platforms, the Schweitzer book mentioned in the previous footnote has good coverage of the kinds of attacks that have been aimed at users of various IM services.
205. Schweitzer, Douglas, Securing the Network from Malicious Code, John Wiley, September, 2002, http://www.nerdbooks.com/item.html?id=0764549588
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