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Washington Post: Home Users Not Immune To Worms

Aug 19, 2001, 14:15 (16 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols)
"The sites that seem to be most susceptible to Code Red are small Web hosting providers and advanced home users with dedicated Internet access," said Brandon Pepelea, president of Network Security Automation Control Corp. of Santa Monica, Calif. He noted that even now, "some large corporations haven't eradicated Code Red from their arsenal of servers." For example, last week, Microsoft's Hotmail service and the Associated Press's computers both came down with Code Red.

The worm dates back to early July. On July 19, CERT reported that Code Red had spread to more than 250,000 systems -- in nine hours. While, like a wild fire, Code Red has already burned most of the systems that are vulnerable to it, it's still catching fire in unprotected systems. Richard R. Morgan, a systems engineer at a telecommunications company in Haymarket and webmaster for the Northern Virginia Linux Users Group, saw 106 unsuccessful attempts to infect his home Linux systems on Aug. 5, and he still sees more than a dozen assaults a day.

Morgan's computer, with its non-Microsoft operating system, can't be infected by the worm. But he's still feeling the effects of it, and so are many other home users."

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