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Conficker Attacks DPS Computers

The new variant of infamous Conficker computer worm has hit the network at the Texas DPS (Department of Public Safety, US) that chiefly deals with administrative functions, according to officials on April 17, 2009.

Moreover, the officials report that approximately 2,000 troopers on guard of the Texas highways could not send e-mails from their PCs on account of the Conficker infection.

DPS also states that the worm disrupted internal communications as well as certain external services like the work of issuing licenses to Texas drivers. At first, the office tried to carry on operations but the virus eventually paralyzed work at it.

In fact, all the offices across the Texas state is understood to have encountered the problems. It means that not a single office within entire Texas was in a condition to issue fresh licenses to drivers due to the nasty infection.

Director of DPS, Stanley Clark, said that the department had been working hard to restore the services and believed that it was nearly done, as reported by KVUE on April 15, 2009.

But Tom Vinger, Spokesman for DPS, disclosed that the office continued to face problems at the various license-issuing branches, as reported by Chron on April 16, 2009.

Furthermore, it is said that Texas Department of Information Resources has notified several state agencies like the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission and the State Comptroller's Office to temporarily withdraw connection from the DPS' main network till the problem is fixed.

Besides, Tela Mange, Spokeswoman for DPS, said that the department was extremely concerned about the security of its computers. According to her, people who create such viruses do everything possible to beat virus protection, as reported by statesman on April 18, 2009.

Commenting on the Conficker worm, security experts, stated it shifts from one computer to another by exploiting security flaws in the Windows operating software. And as different from other online attacks that require users to downloading malware, Conficker searches un-patched computers and even without user-interaction, infects the system. Meanwhile, although Microsoft has issued a patch for Conficker, many users including DPS haven't yet applied it that is creating the problems.

Related article: Conviction of First Felony Spam in Virginia Upheld

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