back to article Conficker: Hold the funeral, it's not dead yet

Media coverage of the Conficker superworm has died down over recent weeks but variants of the worm are still infecting 50,000 new PCs a day. The US, Brazil and India are the main cultivation grounds for the worm, according to reports from the Symantec threat intelligence team. Symantec has knocked up a colour-coded map …


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  1. Gabriel Vistica

    About that heat map...

    What about the countries with EXACTLY 340751 infected computers?

  2. David Simpson
    Thumb Down

    Norton ?

    Hi ! I'm a security software company and I want you to buy my overpriced bloated software suite instead of excellent free alternatives (AVG, Avast, PC Tools AV, Avira etc.)

    People would want to buy my software if they only new how many evil threats are out there !

    So.... I'll publish "independent research" to scare everyone into buying my crap !

    I don't care Norton I really don't last virus I had was Blaster, and that was M$ fault, Avast has been fine for me and a large dose of common sense.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    That map... dire! Last time I checked Sardinia was not a perfect square, and a good chunk of the emerald isle has gone missing!!

    Plus what is their motivation for the numbers on the legend?

  4. Pierre

    50,000 windows boxes in the US...

    You almost scared me there, I thought some normal machines were at risk...

    On the same note, there is a very simple solution: transfer ownership of every infected machine in the world to the state of Arkansas for destruction (shipping at the original owner's cost of course).

    Also apparently the worm made a brief appearance in hospitals and even government-affiliated networks in the UK, quite possibly making it the world biggest vital infrastructure cracking of all time, so all owners of infected machines around the world should face extradition and trial in the UK.

  5. Fingers

    New Zealand disappears off the map???

    Nice to see that New Zealand doesn't warrant appearing on Symantec's "heat map"...must be completely unaffected by Conflicker (yeah right).

    After all, they wouldn't be aware of New Zealand would they? It is only the country where Ghost was created and developed until Norton/Symantec liked the idea so much that they bought the company (then turned it into a pile of poo).

    Sigh... 'merkins!

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Did anyone else read that as...

    50,000 new Windows systems shit every day...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ David Simpson

    Every single virus out there is entirely Microsoft's fault due to the utterly inept design of their OS ... Rant at the anti-virus vendors all you want, but the blame for their money grabbing antics lies full-square in Redmond.

  8. Christopher Ahrens

    Why do people blame everyone else?

    Its not hard to patch your systems, hell, they come pre-programmed to update every-day straight out of the box. Its not hard to protect machines, although most bot net infections come from people downloading and installing Hacked / pre-modded copies of Windows which either already contain the bot or they have nearly all security removed (to bypass activation, add junk to the core system code, etc.)

    Microsoft isn't at fault here, the security center in XP will keep bothering users until they properly protect their machines, and UAC in Vista was designed to prevent this (albeit not very friendly, but sudo isn't very friendly either...)

    If Microsoft were to remove all the exploitable code, developer would whine to no end about having to re-write code for the new OS, and end-users would complain that their old software doesn't work anymore.

    If Microsoft were to include or even recommend anti-virus, then the EC would bring another lawsuit about 'Microsoft abusing their Monopoly to push software'.

    So really it is up to the End-users / IT organizations to make sure that there is proper security in place and to patch systems regularly, and to remember that all systems, regardless of OS, should have anti-malware applications.

  9. Zac

    I love Viruses

    David, that is soo true. I get sick of all the media hype and companies trying to make a name for themselves (make sure to check out my blog below.) haha, yes that was a joke at the end.

    Anyways, i have to admit, i am really impressed with this virus. it is mutating and learning. I really wish i could meet the guys that designed it and have lunch (i will even pay!). It is just a thing of beauty. I know there are tons of bad things you could do with it, but we are putting all of that aside for the sake of conversation. Besides, I bet half of the growth that comes from this is companies not doing auto updates, letting it spread like fire through out.


    The Running Tally

  10. Tim
    Black Helicopters

    Dexys Midnight Autorunners

    Windows "autorun" has long been known to be a security vulnerability and a backdoor to MS operating systems. A pity that some security "professionals" overlooked this in a number of organisations in the UK.

  11. Spoopryme

    my take on things...

    im using a pirated copy of winxp with service pack 2. i have been using this exact same copy for seven (7) years now, and the only times i have ever been infected by anything was due to my own stupidity...

    "ooooo she has nude screensavers? lets see this!!"

    common sense and safer internet surfing habits go a very long way towards keeping a computer compromise-free.

    use a java / flash / adblocker of some kind, and avoid russian porn and warez sites like they were SARS carriers. dont just open any old email attachment, and dont just plug in any old USB storage device unless you absolutely trust the owner of said device. dont share any files at all unless you know the person you are sharing with personally, or if said file is something you know for a fact cant be a carrier of malware. dont use IE and in most cases Firefox, as activeX is a vector for problems.

    im starting to rant, so im gonna go now.

  12. Juan Inamillion

    Such a lovely idea.

    That people should start protecting themselves and others by affirmative action. The thing is if human beings worked this way there would be no need to worry about STD's, AIDS or any other nasties that abound because we'd all understand the need for protection.

    The fact of the matter is most people are completely ignorant of the dangers out there. It's all very well you lot pontificating about using common sense and adblocker etc etc but 90% (OK I'm guessing) of ordinary folk haven't got a fucking clue what you're talking about. Yes, you as someone 'informed' about the perils of unfettered internet access know what to do, but Doris of Neasden who wants her groceries delivered at 4.45 before the kids get home from school, has fuck all idea of what you're on about. And why should she? She's been told that the interweb is fantastic and and and you can do all kinds of things and and and it's brilliant and that..

    sorry - I need to have a little lie down now.

  13. james

    What April What April are you working from??

    Don't want to sound too negative - but:

    "Conficker (aka Downadup) infects a Windows system by either exploiting systems unprotected against the MS08-067 vulnerability patched by Microsoft back in April"

    From MS

    "Thursday, October 23, 2008 10:33 AM by MSRCTEAM

    MS08-067 Released"


    The MS08 sort of gives it away - which April were you working from??

  14. Anonymous Coward


    Greenland is completely free of infection!

    Tux, for obvious reasons

  15. Tom

    It still lives...

    On13th May, the local media in one of the Greater Manchester boroughs, reported that the pc machines in a NHS trust hospital, namely Tameside General Hospital were infected with the Conficker virus.

    One would think that large responsible organisations and Government depts, would have system features and scanners in place to prevent such an attack taking place, especially when the awareness factor of the Conficker virus has been known since last year.

    Perhaps there is something clearly wrong with the way that particular hospital is managed?

    The reported article about the conficker infection:

  16. EdwardP

    Am I the only one...

    ...beginning to seriously doubt these figures?

    "...but variants of the worm are still infecting 50,000 new PCs a day."

    "The worm infected millions of systems in the run-up to 1 April..."

    Show your working, or lose marks!

    Botnets are becomming mainstream news, and as we all know, figures get fudged. Lies, damn lies, and statistics.

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