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The worm continues to infect a large number of computers while security experts try and figure out what to do

Microsoft has created a new technology industry posse and a $250,000 reward for people who help turn over the creators of the Conficker worm.

The Conficker worm multiplied like wildfire, and spreads through a hole found in Microsoft Windows systems, though the vulnerability was patched in October.  It also is able to disable anti-malware protection and will block an infected PC from visiting anti-malware vendors Web sites to receive updates.

Security experts are even more worried about the possibility the worm calls home every 24 hours to at least 250 servers each day for instructions or directed actions.

The Houston police department was forced to stop arresting people with traffic warrants because the worm spread its way through the police and city court's computer systems.  Violent offenders were still arrested, but those with outstanding traffic warrants were simply issued citations instead of being arrested, Houston police officials said.

There also was a Conficker outbreak among French military computers, which led to several fighter planes being grounded until everything could be fixed.

Microsoft is working with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and PC security experts while trying to identify the worm's creators.  VeriSign, NeuStar, Public Internet Registry, Global Domains International, AOL, F-Secure, George Tech, and several other organizations have joined the fight to help capture who ever created the Internet worm.

"As part of Microsoft's ongoing security efforts, we constantly look for ways to use a diverse set of tools and develop methodologies to protect our customers," Microsoft Trustworthy Computing Group G.M. George Stathakopoulos said in a statement.  "By combining our expertise with the broader community we can expand the boundaries of defense to better protect people worldwide."

Security company Symantec reported that more than 2.2 million IP addresses over the past five days have been infected with two different forms of the worm, three months after it first hit the Internet.  To date, it's infected at least 10 million PCs since first being introduced into the wild.



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It won't stop
By pequin06 on 2/13/2009 4:31:45 PM , Rating: 5
These virus and malware creators will never stop doing what they do till some real punishment is delt .
Blaming Microsoft that their OS is not secure enough to prevent these attacks is BS.
That's like blaming the manufacturer to the door of your house for a criminal breaking in and stealing your belongings.




RE: It won't stop
By mydogfarted on 2/13/2009 4:51:03 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. It's one thing to find holes in a security system, it's another to blame the victim because they didn't lock the door.


RE: It won't stop
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 5:11:06 PM , Rating: 3
Microsoft has to accept their part of the blame, it was a security breach afterall. That being said, no OS is perfect and there will always be security holes. In the end it is the users responsibility to keep their OS up to date.


RE: It won't stop
By Josett on 2/13/2009 10:43:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Microsoft has to accept their part of the blame, it was a security breach afterall. That being said, no OS is perfect and there will always be security holes.


Agreed. But shouldn't there be by now an AI OS already, adapting to whatever threats might surge? Given the R&D time span and x-illions invested, I believe an 'integrity self-aware' OS should be out by now (anyway, marketing-wise, 'AI *insert OS*' sounds more reliable than Windows 7 or Mac OSX) :)

Third-party AVs & FWs software providers should only add up to this paradigm.

That'd make you final statement,
quote:
In the end it is the users responsibility to keep their OS up to date.

a mere triviality.

Cheers!


RE: It won't stop
By Reclaimer77 on 2/14/2009 5:31:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Agreed. But shouldn't there be by now an AI OS already, adapting to whatever threats might surge?


LOL yeah. It will feature Gene Roddenbery's wifes voice and will run on Isolinier chips powered by an anti matter quantum processing unit.

Good suggestion man. I'm sure MS will get right on that...

/rolls eyes


RE: It won't stop
By callmeroy on 2/16/2009 12:32:38 PM , Rating: 2
Well maybe in the year 2000 it'll come......

....oh wait.....nvm... :)


RE: It won't stop
By Cullinaire on 2/13/2009 6:48:06 PM , Rating: 2
Look at that, conficker strikes again. It made off with the 'a' in dealt apparently. Notice how my message does not have that problem.
It's because I was a good boy and patched.


RE: It won't stop
By descendency on 2/13/2009 10:17:44 PM , Rating: 3
Install Windows ME on their computer.


RE: It won't stop
By rudy on 2/13/2009 11:34:28 PM , Rating: 2
Depends. If the worm spreads on it own on a default windows install then I would say it is M$ fault. It's like what if sometimes your door just opens on it's own so a criminal can walk in without breaking it. If on the other hand a modified windows install that has let down security is what allows the spread or the user OKs it through UAC then it is the users fault.

I know no OS is perfectly secure but M$ needs to keep theirs the most secure of them all because they have the largest market share and therefore have the most hackers working on breaking through their system.


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