Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Conficker Showdown: No End In Sight

Kelly Jackson Higgins writes on Dark Reading:

Security researchers have picked it apart, vendors have banded together to fight it, and most users have at least heard of it after it made the mainstream media for a possible April 1 activation that never happened -- but the Conficker worm just won't go away. Its bot count has remained steady at around 6 million machines since this summer. And no one really knows what its operators have in store for all of that firepower.

"We continue to see infection rates at a very high level, especially for the A and B variants [of Conficker]," says Andre DiMino, director of the Shadowserver Foundation, which tracks Conficker infections for the Conficker Working Group. "We've done a good job at getting a grasp on Conficker itself and its architecture, and have also had great response from groups within the Conficker Working Group. Now we just need to be a little more aggressive in remediation and with more awareness to really make a concerted effort to get this thing cleaned up."

What concerns security researchers is that despite all of the resources and attention being poured into eradicating Conficker -- Microsoft even offers a $250,000 bounty to catch the people behind the worm -- infections just keep coming worldwide. "It continues to be a giant engine idling, and we wait and see what they're going to do with it," DiMino says.

DiMino worries that all of the hype surrounding the April Fool's Day Conficker event that never was lulled users into a false sense of security that they are immune to Conficker, and that it's considered old hat now compared with other threats.

More here.


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