Can an FTP Client Pull Viruses?

By alex@2007 ·
Hi all, just a general question on FTP, i used an Ipswitch WS_FTP Pro 2006, one morning when I came to check severs state as per usual routine, and i have noticed that my designated ftp server was filled with viruses, good job i use enterprise anti-virus. I was advised that if software is left open all the time then it will pull viruses from an infected remote system, into mine. i took no notice at the time, the aim was to clear the server and get it back up and running.
But now I kind of am wondering if it is a true statement?
So my question guys: can an FTP pull viruses? Would it not done so if it was closed?

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Yes a FTP Client can download a Virus

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Can an FTP Client Pull Vi ...

But the infection has to be on the site that you are downloading from. If there is an infection there and you select the infected file you can download it via FTP without a second thought.

Now I'm not going to give a blanket answer here but generally speaking if the Client is open but not downloading anything you are unlikely to pick up any infections. But it's always possible depending on just who writes the problem program as to how it will work.

If you have to have an FTP Server constantly open I would keep some Real Time AV protection running on it just to be on the safe side. But depending on the application of the server it's most common to shut these down after working hours and start them up again when work opens in the morning. However that really depends on the business in question and how many remote users you have connecting to the system.

Personally I would be seeing the Remote Users as a potentially bigger problem than something downloading itself while the FTP Server is unattended. However that could change very quickly if some of the Script Kiddies get it into their heads to take advantage of any weaknesses in FTP programs.


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