Feeds

Conficker suspect brought to book in Beavertown?

Evidence of Russian sense of humour found!

High performance access to file storage

While the rest of the world bit its nails in terror that the Conficker worm would somehow rise up and swamp the internet on 1 April, Russian wags seized on the opportunity to craft a subtle April Fool joke.

A story by Russian news agency RIA Novost that police in Belarus had arrested a pair of suspects looked plausible enough at first sight. But a closer reading reveals the story (extracts of Google translation below) has several ludicrous aspects that mark it as a jape.

Law enforcement agencies of Belarus and Interpol as a result of a joint operation detained two people suspected of creating the worm Conficker, infected millions of computers around the world, transmits RIA Novosti.

The story goes on to suggest that preliminary analysis of one of the computers seized by police showed source code for the infamous Conficker worm, according to second deputy chief of the Bobruisk District Department of Internal Affairs, Lieutenant Andrew Kandyba.

The agency, through collaboration with Skype to law enforcement agencies managed to intercept and decipher one of the VoIP-calls with their attackers «colleague», which, according to the IP-address of his computer, was in Russia. According Kandyba, the conversation was about plans to conduct large-scale operations using built worm Conficker super-botneta.

Mikko Hyppönen, chief research officer at F-Secure, pointed out the inconsistencies in the story. "We have no direct knowledge of the case at all," Hyppönen told us. "But I would bet a bottle of vodka it's an April Fools joke.

"The evidence sounds like a joke ('found a hacker magazine'? give me a break). Also, since when has any police anywhere been able to instantly provide a comment on the contents of the suspect's computer?"

The biggest hint that the story is a joke, as Hyppönen pointed out, is the name of the city: Bobrujsk, which might just be a differently transliterated version of Babruysk or Babruisk - something like the Russian equivalent of Scunthorpe, in comedy terms. A Russian website focused on jokes about Babruisk can be found here and more background on why the city's name (which resembles the Russian word for Beaver) is used in jokes can be found here.

So the story leaves us none the wiser as to the identity of the unknown author of Conficker. Some sources, such as Vietnamese security firm Bkis, suggest that Conficker is the work of Chinese malware authors, but even this remains largely speculative. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
Experian subsidiary faces MEGA-PROBE for 'selling consumer data to fraudster'
US attorneys general roll up sleeves, snap on gloves
Bad PUPPY: Undead Windows XP deposits fresh scamware on lawn
Installing random interwebs shiz will bork your zombie box
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.