EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

01.18.09

Microsoft Botnets: The Chaos Continues

Posted in Microsoft, Security, Windows at 6:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Zombie
Fear not the Windows zombies

There are many ways to “Suck at Information Security”, but one easy way is to choose a platform that leads to entire military bases getting cracked.

The British military is one of the very few which choose this tactless route even for nuclear submarines and it costs it dearly.

Virus ‘sends RAF e-mails to Russia’

THE Ministry of Defence is investigating a major breach in security amid claims that all e-mail traffic from a number of RAF stations has been sent to a Russian internet server.

The e-mails were allegedly diverted to the Russian sender by a worm virus that entered the MoD systems 12 days ago bringing down computers and blocking e-mail communications across the military.

The world is already filled with about 320 million Windows PCs that are zombies, so what’s another massive botnet anyway?

New Botnets Replace Vanquished Pests

Although the shutdown of a California Web hosting company eradicated several prominent botnets last year, others have stepped up to fill the gaps, a security researcher says.

Gone from the landscape, said Joe Stewart, director of research at Atlanta-based SecureWorks Inc., are “Srizbi” and “Storm,” the botnets Stewart ranked as No. 1 and No. 5, respectively, in an April 2008 botnet census.

How can anyone combat Windows worms that appear all the time in new forms?

A variant of a malicious worm that targeted Microsoft Windows now is spreading via USB sticks, researchers say.

Security company BitDefender Labs, based in Bucharest, Romania, detected the Windows worm variant in late December. The original worm known as Win32.Worm.Downadup, first made its appearance in late November, exploiting a Microsoft vulnerability in the Windows RPC Server Service. Since then, it has rapidly spread across numerous corporate networks with the aim of distributing malicious software on susceptible computers.

Even an Instant Messaging (IM) program is no longer safe because Microsoft turned simple communication protocols into something that can invoke unknown executables.

Internet MSN users are warned. Some programme writers are now using IM to spread malicious programs such as viruses and worms. These viruses can spread when a person opens an infected file, such as pictures of pornographic nature, that is sent through IM by someone who appears to be a contact.

Why is a program for exchange of text leading to the running of untrusted code? This is an architectural deficiency that would prove costly. Outlook and ActiveX are almost perfect examples and they requires no social engineering to lead to a raft of menaces.

“Our products just aren’t engineered for security.”

Brian Valentine, Microsoft executive

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

3 Comments

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    January 19, 2009 at 9:15 am

    Gravatar

    The recurrence of MSN worms ought to be a warning that it’s past time to switch IM protocols and networks, for those still in the stoneage.

    MSN, live.com, and any other worm site ought to be blocked at the firewall. Same for ports used by MS Messenger.

    XMPP and Jabber are the next-generation chat/messenging protocols. Use them or lose out.

  2. The Mad Hatter said,

    January 19, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    Gravatar

    And of course whenever a worm/virus/security hole is mentioned in the news, they never mention that it’s a Microsoft only problem, and if you point this out to the news media, they don’t take any action. The fact that Microsoft is often one of their major advertisers has nothing to do with this of course.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    January 19, 2009 at 10:07 pm

    Gravatar

    Here’s an E-mail that I received this morning (for sharing):


    Hi, Roy,

    Here’s an example of pro-MSFT spin on headlines. All it takes is one
    bad member on the editorial team and an entire publication can be
    compromised, like here:

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/TECH/ptech/01/16/virus.downadup/index.html?eref=rss_tech” title=”Downadup virus exposes millions of PCs to hijack

    The title is “Downadup virus exposes millions of PCs to hijack”. If we
    stick with the standard usage of the verb “expose” then the correct
    title is “Windows exposes millions of PCs to hijack”


    Had it been a Linux worm, there would probably be a different headline, no? The mythology of Microsoft is that “all computers” are not secure and “Windows is the standard”.

What Else is New


  1. Links 16/9/2014: Firefox OS Smartphones in Bangladesh, “Treasure Map” of the Internet

    Links for the day



  2. The United Kingdom Should Dump Microsoft For the Sake of National Security

    The UK has issues of Microsoft dependency and Windows viruses; its migration to Free software and GNU/Linux is not fast enough to guard its autonomy in the age of digital imperialism<



  3. CBS Hires Even More Microsoft Staff to Cover Microsoft Matters

    CBS continues to be infested with Microsoft staff past and present (this time Dave Johnson) and the bias in output is quite revealing



  4. Microsoft Has Just Killed Minecraft for GNU/Linux and the Possibility of Free/Open Source Releases

    Persson sells out to Microsoft and lets the abusive monopolist destroy the popular cross-platform game that a community has been built around



  5. Another Reason to Boycott Intel UEFI

    More anti-competitive aspects are revealed inside UEFI, which helps merginalise GNU/Linux



  6. Quick Mention: Novell and SUSE Passed to Microsoft's 'Partner of the Year', Microsoft Focus

    Novell is changing hands again, and falling into the hands of even more Microsoft-friendly actors



  7. Links 16/9/2014: Linux 3.17 RC5, KDE Frameworks 5.2.0

    Links for the day



  8. Željko Topić, Benoît Battistelli, and the European Patent Office (EPO): Part II

    Part II of our look into the EPO appointment of Željko Topić and other matters showing the dubious integrity of the EPO



  9. Links 14/9/2014: Android-based Watches Earn Optimism

    Links for the day



  10. Links 14/9/2014: Eucalyptus Devoured

    Links for the day



  11. Links 11/9/2014: Linux Toilet Project, Linux-Based Wheelchair Project

    Links for the day



  12. Links 10/9/2014: Brian Stevens in Google, Ubuntu 14.10 Expectations

    Links for the day



  13. Links 9/9/2014: Hating/Loving Linux, Android Aplenty

    Links for the day



  14. Links 8/9/2014: Linux 3.17 RC 4, Switzerland Welcoming Snowden

    Links for the day



  15. Suspicion of High-Level Corruption at the European Patent Office (EPO): Part I

    The European Patent Office (EPO) Vice-President has a background of corruption and his appointment to the EPO too is believed to be reliant on systemic corruption



  16. Links 6/9/2014: Core OS at DigitalOcean, Women in Xorg

    Links for the day



  17. Software Patents 'Quality' Debated in Courts, Microsoft's Biggest Patent Troll Still a Chronic Liar

    Intellectual Ventures, Microsoft's and Bill Gates' largest patent proxy, continues to spread lies about its motivations, claiming that patent assessment is among the goals when in fact only the courts and patent offices do this



  18. New Article Explains How Bill Gates Prevents Schools From Moving to GNU/Linux and Free Software

    A new article from Al Jazeera provides details about the role of so-called 'charities' of billionaires inside school systems



  19. Microsoft Sued for Large-scale Copyright Abuses

    Microsoft reveals its disregard for copyright law which it loves so much to wield as a weapon against its competition and clients



  20. Links 5/9/2014: New WordPress, Systemd Debate Continues

    Links for the day



  21. 'Embrace and Extend' at Microsoft: The New Generation

    Some of the latest examples of Microsoft's predatory acts against Free software and against competition in general, disguised as acts of friendliness



  22. Bill Gates' God Complex: Common Core a One-Man Campaign of Greed and Control

    The push for Common Core is overwhelmingly dominated by Bill Gates, who intimidates and even resorts to retribution against critics while bribing those who help him accomplish the goal of privatised (for his private profit) indoctrination in US schools



  23. Bill Gates Investments Harm the World, Not Improve the World, Based on New Exclusive Piece of Investigative Journalism at The Nation

    The Gates Foundation's profiteering efforts and lack of ethics outlined in a new report that many sites around the Web find fascinating and mostly irrefutable



  24. Links 3/9/2014: Android Gadgets, New Tails OS

    Links for the day



  25. Linus Torvalds DebConf Talk

    Torvalds' latest talk which got media attention earlier this month



  26. Microsoft Should Not be Considered Too Big to Jail

    Microsoft continues to use dumping as a strategy which revolves around starving the competition, not beating the competition



  27. Pro-Software Patents Voices Finally Acknowledge the Demise of Software Patents in the United States

    A milestone is reached as even the most zealous supporters of patents on algorithms (or computer-implemented inventions, or software patents) are admitting that the era of software patents may be over



  28. New Lies About Microsoft 'Privacy' and New FUD Against the GPL Comes From 'Former' Microsoft Staff at Black Duck

    More AstroTurfing by sites that are run by Microsoft MVPs and firms which were created by people from Microsoft



  29. Links 2/9/2014: GNU/Linux in BBC, Calls Against systemd

    Links for the day



  30. Links 1/9/2014: Poettering on systemd, ITNews on DBMSs

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts