Urgent talks as Code Red rears its head

A number of respected IT industry organisations are meeting to advise organisations to take immediate action to respond to the threat.

The Code Red virus, known as a worm, is poised to strike again on Wednesday at 1am BST, when it emerges from its dormant state to infect more machines.

Those present at the security conference are warning that ‘it is very likely that the resulting distributed denial of service could impact businesses and home users as the internet slows down dramatically’.

Security firm ISS, which is also present at the conference, said that most IT system administrators and users will ‘not even know they have been compromised’.

According to ISS, the Code Red worm infected more than 250,000 computer systems in just nine hours on 19 July. It infects systems by exploiting weaknesses Micorsoft technology, before using infected servers as launch pads to attack more systems.

‘This uncontrolled growth in scanning directly decreases the speed of the internet and can cause sporadic but widespread outages among all types of systems,’ said ISS.

It is also believed that the worm has mutated ‘so that it may be even more dangerous’.

To harden vulnerable servers against this attack Microsoft has released programs or patches which are available for its operating systems.


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