My creation! (APRIL FOOL)
Image by david ian roberts via Flickr

Worm like conficker is a digital time bomb which is hard coded to trigger on April 1 (April fool’s day). Antivirus companies are doing their best to minimize the impact of conficker worm. Conficker first variant was introduced few months back and have already caused significant amount of damage to businesses. Conficker is using MD6 hash algorithm, first known case where this new algorithm has been used. Across the globe, there are about 15 million computer infected with conficker worm.

“In computer, a worm is a self replicating virus that does not alter files but resides in active memory and duplicates itself”

This happens to be third variant of conficker in the wild which is named “conficker c” which pose a significant threat to businesses and security expert are still trying to figure out the potential impact of this worm. In new variant, the worm has tendency to morph into something else which makes it harder for antivirus software to detect it. What is known about this worm so far is that at a predefined time on April 1st the infected machine will execute the worm which will be later be exploited by the worm originator. The originator or controller of the worm will control the infected machines and it’s anybody’s guess right now what commands will be given to these zombies. It can be to steal private and personal information, spam, DDoS, or simply wipe the infected machine hard drive. Also bad guys don’t have to give the commands to zombie machines on April 1st, it can be any time after April 1st.

Possible countermeasures:
• Keep up-to-date patches (Microsoft Ms08-067 security update)
• Keep antivirus signature files up-to-date (latest DAT)
• Disable Auto run
• Try different antivirus software to verify and take advantage of McAfee free online scan services
Free Sophos Conficker clean-up tool
• Make sure your machine is not infected with “conficker c” then you don’t have to worry about April 1st

Microsoft is offering a $250,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the conficker worm’s makers.

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