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Downadup Worm Invading 1 Million PCs Per Day, Disables Agent-Based Security Solutions

Shavlik offers webinar to illustrate why agentless technology is best protection against Conficker worm
ST. PAUL, Minn., Jan. 21, 2009 -- Shavlik Technologies, LLC, the market leader in simplifying, automating and accelerating security and compliance readiness, today commented on the new variant of the Conficker worm known as 'Downadup.' Shavlik reports that the company's NetChk Protect customers can and have protected themselves from this worm, but for organizations that rely on other agent-based patch management solutions, such as Windows Update, if already infected, they may be unable to apply the patch.

Downadup is yet another exploit of a security vulnerability that could be eliminated by application of MS08-067, which Microsoft released out-of-band in October 2008. To protect networks from this potential threat, IT departments must patch and configure all physical systems and virtual machines to ensure MS08-067 is deployed across the network. Continuous or on-demand security configuration assessments can provide additional defensive measures by ensuring that services like firewalls are running and that password and account policies are enforced.

"More than 9 million PCs have already been infected and IT departments cannot afford to take the risk of becoming infected and exposing confidential data," said Chris Schwartzbauer, VP Worldwide Field Operations, Shavlik Technologies. "For Shavlik customers that use NetChk Protect to scan for and patch their networks, this is a non-event. In a December survey, 90% of our customers reported they had already applied this patch. For organizations who have struggled with applying the patch, Shavlik Technologies is offering to assess their exposure to this worm at no cost, and then immediately fix their systems for a one-time, no-commitment fee."

How the Conficker and Downadup Worm Works

The worm spreads by more traditional methods of accessing computers over the Internet, but can also infect computers via malicious code on USB devices. Once infected, the worm turns off Windows Update services - thereby preventing the machine from obtaining the very patch that would have prevented the initial exploit.

The worm also denies Internet access to the websites of many different security vendors. Attempting to go to your AV or security vendor of choice to download detection or removal tools will be blocked by this worm. (The Shavlik web site is not blocked by the worm.) The worm is also known to modify the Windows firewall settings to allow access to the computer via specified ports.

Find Out More

You can access detailed commentary and analysis about Downadup from Shavlik's CTO, Eric Schultze, at: http://www.shavlik.com/desk-of-the-cto.aspx#eighteen.

Live Webinar

Register Here to learn more about the potential threat the Downadup worm poses and how to simplify deployment of MS08-067 and minimize operational impact, register for a webinar held by Shavlik Technologies' security experts on Thursday, January 22nd at 11:00am CT.

Shavlik Provides "Any Patch, Anywhere" Protection

Shavlik reports its NetChk Protect Any Patch, Anywhere technology protects its customers from this serious security vulnerability. Shavlik continues to be the industry leader in response time and support of newly available vendor patches. In addition to a solution architecture that streamlines integration of in-the-box support for new patches, Shavlik NetChk Protect also provides custom patch editor with a wizard-like interface for creating and maintaining custom patches. Combined with the Dynamic Product Detection capabilities in the NetChk Protect scan engine, customers can patch virtually any Windows application on their network.

A true enterprise solution, Shavlik NetChk Protect uses Active Vulnerability Management to simplify IT operations to maintain secure, policy-compliant networks through automatic and continuous Assessment, Remediation and Management.

About Shavlik Technologies

Shavlik Technologies, LLC delivers enterprise IT organizations robust software solutions that rapidly accelerate and continuously improve security and compliance readiness by simplifying IT operations, and identifying and reliably closing system security gaps. Shavlik's solutions provide Rapid Readiness so IT organizations realize continuous security and compliance readiness in a fraction of the time, cost and IT resources required by alternative approaches.

With more than 10,000 customers worldwide, Shavlik enables enterprises to simplify complex IT security and compliance management, providing trustworthy solutions that free up critical IT resources to focus on innovations that drive business growth while lowering costs. Shavlik also licenses its technology to more than 20 leading security and technology companies such as BMC, Juniper, Sophos, Symantec and VMware. For more information, visit Shavlik Technologies at www.shavlik.com.

Shavlik Technologies is a registered trademark in the United States and certain other countries, of Shavlik Technologies. Additional Shavlik product names are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Shavlik Technologies. All other trademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners.

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