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Confounded by Conficker

Confounded by Conficker

Early this year, the Conficker worm garnered mainstream attention due to a supposed April 1 trigger. Microsoft released a patch for Conficker outside of its Patch Tuesday schedule, and members of the security community prepared a set of freely available tools to aid in Conficker detection and removal for infected systems. Whether it was because of these tools or because Conficker had been highly overestimated, April Fool's Day 2009 came and went, and the nation's computing systems (for the most part) remained unscathed. With that said, Conficker called attention to the problems inherent in deploying client systems that offer up network-facing services to anonymous nodes, and it highlighted the importance of watching more closely the privileges granted to the system-level applications that run on mainstream operating systems.—Jason Brooks

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