Worm Posse Being Formed by Microsoft

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Microsoft announced in a press release yesterday that it was "offering a $250,000 reward for information that results in the arrest and conviction of those responsible for illegally launching the Conficker (aka Downadup) worm on the Internet."

The press release also stated that Microsoft had created a partnership with ICANN, NeuStar, VeriSign, CNNIC, Afilias, Public Internet Registry, Global Domains International Inc., M1D Global, AOL, Symantec, F-Secure, ISC, researchers from Georgia Tech, the Shadowserver Foundation, Arbor Networks and Support Intelligence to implement a coordinated, global response to the worm.

Furthermore, Microsoft said that it was working with security researchers, ICANN and operators within the Domain Name System to coordinate a response designed to disable domains targeted by Conficker.

The press release also said that "More information about how to protect yourself from Conficker can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/conficker. Customers interested in learning more about staying safe online can visit http://www.microsoft.com/protect."

The Conficker worm has been especially widespread, affecting by some estimates 15 million plus PCs.

The British Royal Navy and French Navy have both been affected by it.

Spreading the worm by the use of USB port devices is very common means of infection. Disabling of Windows AutoRun capabilities has been highly recommended as a way to preventative measure against the worm.

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Risk Factor

IEEE Spectrum's risk analysis blog, featuring daily news, updates and analysis on computing and IT projects, software and systems failures, successes and innovations, security threats, and more.

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