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Worm Forces Shutdown of Messenger 2009 Active Links

According to Microsoft's Inside Windows Live blog dated November 12, 2010, the software giant has tentatively turned off active links with which users accessed Windows Live Messenger 2009. This has been done to stop a harmful computer worm from spreading onto the systems of people using the Windows Live instant messaging application.

Specifically the warning states that one especially malevolent worm which replicates itself is presently attempting at proliferating via the most popular social networks and instant messaging programs, including Windows Live Messenger 2009.

Moreover, to spread, this worm injects a web-link inside a chat on the IM wherein one of the persons engaged in the conversation already has his PC infected. If anyone follows the web-link, the related site opens inside a browser, pulls down the virus on his PC, and this way the process goes on.

Usually, when IM notices any web address at the time a conversation is on, the address is converted to make a hyperlink that when followed automatically produces a site. This helps the worm to surreptitiously get installed without any difficulty and leading the user onto a malware-laden website.

Say the security specialists that infection proliferating in this way is quite frequent and when it's a large network like Live Messenger these kinds of worms spread very fast. Thus a good measure is to close active links so that users of Windows Live Messenger 2009 remain secured whilst Microsoft prepares a permanent solution.

Nevertheless, it's still possible for the users to view the web-pages which are connected with these links if they copy-and-paste the latter into their browsers.

And those who have a doubt that the worm has already compromised their systems are recommended to run a security scan on their computers to clean off possible infections.

Other end-users are also suggested to maintain up-to-date security software and keep anti-virus definitions to their latest. Moreover, they must be extremely careful when anyone even if a friend sends a web-link for they'll never know beforehand whether that sender's account is already compromised. Finally, users who haven't yet installed an anti-virus should think about installing one without delay.

Related article: Worm Spreads With Random Subject Lines

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