The Conficker worm has infected millions of Windows computers—and is set to be unleashed on April 1st, 2009. Here's what you need to know to keep yourself safe.
What is the Conficker Worm?
Microsoft released an update in October to resolve a critical security hole in the Windows "Server" service. Since people aren't as diligent about patching as they should be, hackers created a new worm that spread like wildfire, leaving systems completely under their control. Security researchers have determined that the virus is expected to go "live" on April 1st, 2009, causing your computer to do bad things—but since the worm uses a P2P protocol it's nearly impossible to identify the source.
How Does It Spread?
The worm originally started spreading using a network attack against the file sharing services in Windows, but since it can automatically update itself, it adapted to spread through the autoplay feature on removable media like USB thumb drives, by adding a new option to open where you see "publisher not specified". This allows the worm to spread to systems already patched against the original vulnerability, so using anti-virus software is even more important, because once it's on your computer it can spread further.
Is My Computer Affected?
Most anti-virus software has already been able to detect and remove the Conficker worm for a while now, so you are probably not at risk as long as you keep up with your updates and have real-time scanning enabled.
To actually detect and remove the worm, you can use the freely availablefile sharing
How Do I Stay Safe?
Staying safe from this, and many other viruses and worms, requires a combination of keeping your computer updated and using anti-virus software. Here's a couple of quick tips to follow:
Make sure your system is fully patched using Windows Update, and update MS08-067 has been applied.
Make sure your anti-virus is fully updated, enabled, and you've run a full scan.
Make sure you are using strong passwords (see our guide to choosing great passwords).
Disable the AutoPlay feature—which Conficker uses to infect systems.
Make sure your firewall is enabled when you are on untrusted networks.
Make sure your data is backed up—if you aren't sure what to use, see our five best Windows backup tools.
Keeping your system and your data safe is extremely important, so make sure to take some time out of your day to keep your system patched, updated, and virus-free. Hit the link for Microsoft's explanation of the situation, or check out my article on scanning and removing malicious viruses for the walk-through approach.
Protect yourself from the Conficker computer worm
DXR is one of the most established brands in the field of gaming chairs, thanks to the unique design of their products and the way they are committed to improving their gaming chairs. The firm has in place a complex system that enables it to study the performance of its products and try to improve them as soon as possible. Thus, you can get better products all the time the firm introduces a new version of its popular chairs. Given a large number of its products that are already on the market, you may be at a loss when you must choose one. Here is a list of some of the best gaming chairs by the company that you need to try. Read more
Today, parents are facing challenging parenting due to the existence of mobile phones and social media. Children are now having unlimited access to any information, both the beneficial and the damaging ones. This is where the Android spy app like iKeyMonitor can give the ease to monitor their children’s activity on the internet. Find out more the benefits of the application in this following article. Read more
It’s easier than ever to create and run your own website. Dedicated website builders have changed the way that businesses are able to create their own online storefront, and offer a wide array of advantages over more traditional methods of website creation. Read more