Conficker Infected 6 Million PCs Worldwide

Security firm Kaspersky Lab's latest data states that the Kido/Conficker
worm, which is an extremely notorious malicious program hitting the Internet
community, has so far infected nearly 5-6 Million computers across the world.

Globally, China hosts the maximum number of systems infected by this nasty
worm, with about 2.7 Million cases reported in the country. Brazil and Russia
follows China reporting one million and 800,000 infected systems
respectively.

Kaspersky China Lab Chief, Konstantin Sapronov emphasized on bringing these
extremely high figures to zero, as reported by Business Mirror on May 18,
2009. Moreover, quoting figures from Consumer Economics, Kaspersky Lab
revealed that in 2007, these malicious programs attacked businesses all
around the world, causing a global financial loss of $13 Billion.

Explaining the modus operandi of Kido/Conficker worm, security experts stated
that the virus, at first, downloads itself onto an infected hard drive and
disguises consecutive downloads of software-program divers with the help of
hypertext markup language, Java script and the Hexadecimal code, i.e. the
base programming language, while the computer system of the unaware Internet
user connects to a chain of malicious websites without his concern.

As soon as this procedure of infection and multiplication concludes, the
user's system becomes a "zombie" and starts acting as a component of a botnet
(a network of compromised computers). Besides, the worm also spreads via
disk-drive transmission, usually through USB flash drives inserted into the
computer's USB slot.

Security experts believe that after the outburst of January 2009, the latest
version's circulation has been stopped for the time being, due to the intense
efforts of the DNS (domain-name system) providers who blocked the compromised
websites to which the virus links in order to redirect the unaware Internet
user.

However, these actions are merely a temporary solution to the problem as they
are unable to prevent the worm from stealing confidential details and
hijacking the computer systems. They can only affect the ability of malicious
code to connect to the wicked websites to forward the details stolen by it.

Researchers at Kaspersky recommended users to update their anti-malware and
anti-virus software and to be cautious while surfing the Internet as well as
while using flash drives and hard drives.

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