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The UK web sites of car makers Mitsubishi and Fiat are the latest to fall victim to a vandal who exploits vulnerabilities with Microsoft's Internet Information Server (IIS).

Like Microsoft's New Zealand site, which fell victim to defacement yesterday, the car sites were defaced by Prime Suspectz with a message mocking the security of Microsoft's software. The identical defacements are mirrored on the Alldas.de security website. The Ford defacement can be seen here and the Mitsubishi vandalism here.

Paul Rogers, a security consultant at MIS Corporate Defence, said it was not clear which of the "numerous" holes in the platform used, IIS on NT4, were exploited to perform the attack. He added that MIS is seeing more demand from users wishing to migrate from Windows-based Web server to Unix-based systems because of security concerns.

"There is more work involved in installing a secure NT server than a Unix server. The interdependency of Windows software means you tend to have certain things running whether you want them to or not - Unix is much more modular and so you can stop applications running," said Rogers.

"We can set up a hardened Linux Web server in half a day but with NT, by the time you apply fixes and security patches, it takes two days," he added. ®

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