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Hackers Invade CDC’s Podcast Site

Authorities at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are worried about a new kind of computer virus.

Some hackers broke into a Web site belonging to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the first week of this month. They dropped a virus on the site that possibly damaged the computer systems of users who used them to visit the site, agency officials said.

According to CDC officials, the hacking happened over the agency's Podcast site. The site contains audio and video pieces on a number of different topics relating to public health and the officials think there has been no compromise of any sensitive data, so far.

In a news item posted at www.cdc.gov on February 3 2007, the agency said, probably visitors to CDC's site found their computers infected with a virus and were suffering the consequences.

CDC officials suggested that their site's visitors scan their systems for viruses. A CDC spokesman Tom Skinner said the virus entered their system on Thursday morning and they deactivated the site within a few hours. Ajc published Skinner's statement on Sunday February 4, 2007. During this short interval the Podcast Web site received "several hundred" visits. Skinner further said there was no information about the genre of the virus.

The agency at Atlanta came to know about the hacking problem on the morning of February 1 2007, according to the news release.

The agency has taken the Podcast site offline as a precautionary measure and thinks it will remain that way for another few days. CDC is putting all efforts to ensure safety of the site and hopes to repost it within the next few days, the agency said.

The investigation was in progress and if any new problem arises, CDC will be able to halt and resolve it because they have detected the virus, said Skinner.

CDC launched the Podcast site in July 2006 and since then has received around 40,000 visits, he said.

In the end, as on February 4, 2007 there is no information about the number of subscribers and users of Podcast site who may have been affected.

Related article: Hackers Redirect Windows Live Search to Malicious Sites

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