Feeds

Conficker: Hold the funeral, it's not dead yet

50,000 new Windows systems hit every day

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Media coverage of the Conficker superworm has died down over recent weeks but variants of the worm are still infecting 50,000 new PCs a day.

The US, Brazil and India are the main cultivation grounds for the worm, according to reports from the Symantec threat intelligence team.

Symantec has knocked up a colour-coded map illustrating the spread of the worm, which can be found here.

Conficker (aka Downadup) infects a Windows system by either exploiting systems unprotected against the MS08-067 vulnerability patched by Microsoft back in April, or by taking advantage of weak password security to spread across network shares. Infected USB sticks and other items of removable media can also spread the infection.

The worm infected millions of systems in the run-up to 1 April, where it changed the way it phoned home to pre-programmed servers to poll for updates. Nothing happened, apart from excitable media coverage of the date itself, but on 9 April some infected systems began to download additional items of malicious code via P2P update functionality built into the latest variants of the worm. The updated components included copies of the Waledac Trojan, a botnet application used to send spam.

Despite this there have been no reports of use of Conficker-compromised machines in either sending spam or running denial of service attacks. The overall population of the Conficker worm is constantly eroded by clean-up efforts, so even though 50,000 new machines might be getting infected every day the overall population of infected machines is probably in long-term decline.

The latest on malicious activities associated with the Conficker worm can be found on the Conficker Working Group website here. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SMASH the Bash bug! Apple and Red Hat scramble for patch batches
'Applying multiple security updates is extremely difficult'
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
Hackers thrash Bash Shellshock bug: World races to cover hole
Update your gear now to avoid early attacks hitting the web
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.