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

01.28.09

Windows Botnets Go Out of Control, Obama Web Site Delivers Windows Malware

Posted in Microsoft, Security, Windows at 10:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

THERE ARE SO MANY MICROSOFT failure stories to share today that it’s hard to decide where to start.

Sites Hijacked

Microsoft’s security nightmares as of late [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7] are where we begin by presenting the following report about a government site in Australia getting cracked and doing enough harm that it needed to be shut down.

Like you, I get masses of spam. I knew it wasn’t from jobs.nsw.gov.au no matter how much it pretended to be. I deleted it figuring it was “just another” bit of junk mail, although I was surprised to find one purporting to be from the NSW Government job board; that was definitely a new one on me!

Had I thought about it deeper I might have considered this was no ordinary spam. This time there was a direct relationship between how the spammers got my e-mail address and the organisation they purported to represent.

It turns out the Department of Commerce has taken this whole incident very seriously indeed, and far more than common garden-variety spam would necessitate.

If you visit the site jobs.nsw.gov.au you will see it is inaccessible, and in fact, has been for a week. A message advises that the system is down for “system maintenance.”

The site is powered by Microsoft IIS.

Moving on a little, it turns out that Obama’s Web site too is causing harm. Some pages in it are distributing Windows malware.

Web security firm Websense reports that malicious hackers have registered multiple bogus user accounts on My.BarackObama.com. The site allows legitimate punters to join groups, raise funds, or creates blogs. The griefers have established blogs with fake YouTube clips, ostensibly offering grumble flicks.

According to some new statistics, there is a sharp increase in distribution of Windows malware, with more malicious sites than one can practically keep track of:

AVG is seeing between 200,000 to 300,000 new Web sites per day hosting code that can in some cases result in a PC being infected with malware just by visiting the site, said Roger Thompson, AVG’s chief research officer.

Zombies/Botnets Explode

Conficker is still running wild and it’s draining resources along its path (human resources and Web resources).

The world’s top virus hunters are watching every move made by the attacker in control of a nasty new Internet worm — referred to as “downadup” or “conficker.”

The number of infected Windows PCs keeps growing fast.

A virulent computer virus has infected as many as 15 million computers around the world so far, according to various estimates.

The virus — a self-replicating computer worm known as Downadup, Conficker or Kido — spreads across computer networks using Microsoft Windows software which have not been patched or updated properly. Microsoft issued a patch that fixes the vulnerability the virus exploits last October.

This is also covered here.

Computer experts are preparing to respond to further virus outbreaks and security threats posed by the Windows worm, known as Conficker, Kido and Downadup, which has infected more than 15 million PCs worldwide.

Had Microsoft cared about security rather than premature announcements (vapourware) and irresponsible releases, the Internet would have been a better and safer place to travel.

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

Brian Valentine, Microsoft executive

Broken glass

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

5 Comments

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    January 28, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    Gravatar

    Over the years there have been various Internet milestones. e.g. www passing telnet, then passing ftp-data. ogg vorbis passing 12% of audio, etc. e-mail becoming 60% then 90% spam from windows botnets.

    At what point does (has) the point where the majority of traffic is windows malware get passed?

    Internet has been good, but is in terminal stage windows infestation. Internet2 died on the vine in part because of MS and probably in part because of Doug. How about Internet3, starting with a flat out ban on closed protocols *and* a prohibition against any Windows or MS products…

  2. Needs Sunlight said,

    January 28, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    Gravatar

    Both the UPI article and the USA Today article have major errors. Both misidentify the worm as an “Internet” worm or a “computer” worm. It is neither. It is a Windows worm.

    110 years of journalistic excellence my ass.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    January 28, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    Gravatar

    This is a very important point that Carla wrote about. I mentioned her 2 writings on this subject and gave a new example of Microsoft pressure groups muscling journalists.

  4. twitter said,

    January 28, 2009 at 12:47 pm

    Gravatar

    Messing with the president’s website make a serious federal reaction for these idiots. It will be interesting to watch GWB’s wiretap program turned around to track the spammer’s network. (Who knows, Obama might even get the propper search warrants.) My prediction is that the botnet trail will lead back to WE and other corporate proxies and Obama will dig as deep as he can to find it and any other pieces of Republican guilt. Even if he can’t find that, the M$ cesspool is sure to have dire consequences for M$. We’ve already seen stories about him grumbling about White House computer backwardness and being forced to use a Winblows Mobile handset. Silly stories about iPods and Zunes must also chafe, who would not resent being used as an endorsement for something as rotten as Zune? Porn spam on his website might move Obama’s M$ relationship from disdain to hatred.

  5. Gentoo User said,

    January 28, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    Gravatar

    Apparently you forgot to write up a nasty condemnation of all those PHP/Apache-based sites that were hacked to serve off malware a while ago. They targeted a vulnerability that had a readily-available patch weeks before the exploit was seen in the wild. And then they used Google bombs to draw traffic to the pages, if I recall.

    Oh no, wait. You didn’t forget, of course.

What Else is New


  1. Criminal Microsoft is Censoring the Web and Breaks Laws to Do So; the Web Should Censor (Remove) Microsoft

    Microsoft is still breaking the Internet using completely bogus takedown requests (an abuse of DMCA) and why Microsoft Windows, which contains weaponised back doors (shared with the NSA), should be banned from the Internet, not just from the Web



  2. Microsoft 'Loving' GNU/Linux and Other Corporate Media Fiction

    Microsoft has bullied or cleverly bribed enough technology-centric media sites to have them characterise Microsoft as a friend of Free/Open Source software (FOSS) that also "loves Linux"



  3. India May be Taking Bill Gates to Court for Misusing His So-called 'Charity' to Conduct Clinical Trials Without Consent on Behalf of Companies He Invests in

    Bill Gates may finally be pulled into the courtroom again, having been identified for large-scale abuses that he commits in the name of profit (not "charity")



  4. The Problems With Legal Workarounds, Patent Scope, and Expansion of Patent Trolls to the East

    Patent trolls are in the news again and it's rather important, albeit for various different reasons, more relevant than the ones covered here in the past



  5. Links 20/10/2014: Cloudera and Red Hat, Debian 7.7, and Vivid Vervet

    Links for the day



  6. Links 20/10/2014: 10 Years Since First Ubuntu Release

    Links for the day



  7. How Patent Lawyers Analyze Alice v. CLS Bank

    Breaking down a patent lawyer's analysis of a Supreme Court's decision that seemingly invalidated hundreds of thousands of software patents



  8. Is It Google's Turn to Head the USPTO Corporation?

    The industry-led USPTO continues to be coordinated by some of its biggest clients, despite issues associated with conflicting interests



  9. The EPO's Public Relations Disaster Amid Distrust From Within (and EPO Communications Chief Leaves): Part VII

    Amid unrest and suspicion of misconduct in the EPO's management (ongoing for months if not years), Transparency International steps in, but the EPO's management completely ignores Transparency International, refusing to collaborate; the PR chief of the EPO is apparently being pushed out in the mean time



  10. Links 18/10/2014: Debian Plans for Init Systems, Tails 1.2

    Links for the day



  11. Links 18/10/2014: New ELive, Android Expansion

    Links for the day



  12. Another Fresh Blow to Software Patents (and With Them Patent Trolls)

    Another new development shows that more burden of proof is to be put on the litigant, thus discouraging the most infamous serial patent aggressors and reducing the incentive to settle with a payment out of court



  13. Links 16/10/2014: New Android, SSL 3.0 Flaw

    Links for the day



  14. How the Corporate Press Deceives and Sells Microsoft Agenda

    Various new examples of media propaganda that distorts or makes up the facts (bias/lies by omission/selection) and where this is all coming from



  15. Vista 10 is Still Vapourware, But We Already Know It Will Increase Surveillance on Its Users and Contain Malicious Back Doors

    The villainous company which makes insecure-by-design operating systems will continue to do so, but in the mean time the corporate press covers only bugs in FOSS, not back doors in proprietary software



  16. Links 15/10/2014: KDE Plasma 5.1 is Out, GOG Reaches 100-Title Mark

    Links for the day



  17. With .NET Foundation Affiliation Xamarin is Another Step Closer to Being Absorbed by Microsoft

    Xamarin is not even trying to pretend that separation exists between Microsoft and its work; yet another collaboration is announced



  18. The EPO's Protection Triangle of Battistelli, Kongstad, and Topić: Part VI

    Jesper Kongstad, Benoît Battistelli, and Zeljko Topić are uncomfortably close personally and professionally, so suspicions arise that nepotism and protectionism play a negative role that negatively affects the European public



  19. Corporate Media Confirms the Demise of Software Patents in the United States; Will India and Europe Follow?

    It has become increasingly official that software patents are being weakened in the United States' USPTO as well as the courts; will software leaders such as India and Europe stop trying to imitate the old USPTO?



  20. Links 14/10/2014: CAINE 6, New RHEL, Dronecode

    Links for the day



  21. Microsoft's Disdain for Women Steals the Show at a Women's Event

    Steve Ballmer's successor, Satya Nadella, is still too tactless to lie to the audience, having been given --through subversive means -- a platform at a conference that should have shunned Microsoft, a famously misogynistic company



  22. SCOTUS May Soon Put an End to the 'Copyrights on APIs' Question While Proprietary Giants Continue to Harass Android/Linux in Every Way Conceivable

    Google takes its fight over API freedom to the Supreme Court in the Unites States and it also takes that longstanding patent harassment from the Microsoft- and Apple-backed troll (Rockstar) out of East Texas



  23. Patent Lawsuits Almost Halved After SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Software Patents

    The barrier for acceptance of software patent applications is raised in the United States and patent lawsuits, many of which involve software these days, are down very sharply, based on new figures from Lex Machina



  24. Links 13/10/2014: ChromeOS and EXT, Debian Resists Systemd Domination

    Links for the day



  25. Links 12/10/2014: Blackphone Tablet, Sony's Firefox OS Port

    Links for the day



  26. Links 9/10/2014: Free Software in Germany, Lenovo Tablets With Android

    Links for the day



  27. Links 8/10/2014: A Lot of Linux+AMD News, New ROSA Desktop Is Out

    Links for the day



  28. Lawyers' Propaganda About Software Patents and a New AstroTurf Entity Called Innovation Alliance

    Patent propaganda and deception from patent lawyers (among other parasites such as patent trolls) continues to flood the Web, intersecting with reports that prove them totally wrong



  29. How Microsoft Handles Disasters: Grace Hopper Conference Has Been Infiltrated by "Microsoft Disaster Response"

    Free/Open Source software (FOSS) must be a disaster to Microsoft's bottom line because Microsoft is sending "Microsoft Disaster Response" to infiltrate and disrupt a conference about women in FOSS



  30. Links 8/10/2014: Gummersbach Moves to GNU/Linux, Docker Acquires Koality, KDE Frameworks 5.3

    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