Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Attacks/Breaches

4/13/2009
02:59 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Conficker Worm Hits University Of Utah

Conficker tries to copy itself to removable media drives in a way that forces code execution whenever the removable drive is inserted into a computer system.

The Conficker worm managed to infect about 800 computers at the University of Utah last week, prompting the school to block Internet access temporarily to contain the infection.

The worm is believed to have gained a foothold on the university's network through an infected USB device, said a spokesman with the university's school of health sciences.

He said that IT personnel believe no data was stolen as a result of the infection. "We think we caught it early," he said.

The university has posted tips for curing Conficker infections. Conficker only affects computers running Windows.

The main attack vector used by Conficker is a vulnerability that Microsoft patched in October. But because many organizations and individual users do not keep their software up to date, the worm spread, infecting almost 9 million computers by January. Currently, Conficker infections are estimated at about 1 million to 2 million computers worldwide.

The creators of Conficker have revised their malware several times, adding new infection vectors and new capabilities. The worm also can spread through weak administrative passwords, which it attempts to guess using a password-guessing attack, and through USB devices.

Conficker tries to copy itself to removable media drives in a way that forces code execution whenever the removable drive is inserted into a computer system. It also employs a social-engineering attack, in case the Windows autorun program has been prevented from working automatically: It names the autorun.inf file "Open folder to view files," which typically tricks users into running the malware by clicking on it as if it were a folder.

In February, Microsoft offered a $250,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for Conficker worm. To date, no arrests have been made.

The first iteration of the worm, Conficker.A, makes an effort to avoid infecting systems in a Ukrainian domain or using a Ukrainian keyboard layout, according to a report by SRI International. This suggests that the creators of the malware may live in that part of the world and may be exempting their home country to avoid attracting attention from local authorities.

Last week, a new .E variant was detected by Symantec. It attempts to update Conficker.C with new capabilities, spamming malware, and rogue antivirus software.


2009 marks the 12th year that InformationWeek will be monitoring changes in security practices through our annual research survey. Find out more, and take part.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Threaded  |  Newest First  |  Oldest First
Limited-Time Free Offers to Secure the Enterprise Amid COVID-19
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  3/31/2020
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 4/3/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
6 Emerging Cyber Threats That Enterprises Face in 2020
This Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at six emerging cyber threats that enterprises could face in 2020. Download your copy today!
Flash Poll
State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
Data breaches and regulations have forced organizations to pay closer attention to the security incident response function. However, security leaders may be overestimating their ability to detect and respond to security incidents. Read this report to find out more.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-11586
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-06
An XXE issue was discovered in CIPPlanner CIPAce 9.1 Build 2019092801. An unauthenticated attacker can make an API request that contains malicious XML DTD data.
CVE-2020-11587
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-06
An issue was discovered in CIPPlanner CIPAce 9.1 Build 2019092801. An unauthenticated attacker can make an API request and get the content of ETL Processes running on the server.
CVE-2020-11589
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-06
An Insecure Direct Object Reference issue was discovered in CIPPlanner CIPAce 9.1 Build 2019092801. An unauthenticated attacker can make a GET request to a certain URL and obtain information that should be provided to authenticated users only.
CVE-2020-11590
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-06
An issue was discovered in CIPPlanner CIPAce 9.1 Build 2019092801. An unauthenticated attacker can make an HTTP GET request to HealthPage.aspx and obtain the internal server name.
CVE-2020-11591
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-06
An issue was discovered in CIPPlanner CIPAce 9.1 Build 2019092801. An unauthenticated attacker can make an API request and obtain the full application path along with the customer name.