Stuck on Stuxnet

By Jeremy Wagstaff (this is my weekly Loose Wire Service column for newspaper syndication) We’ve reached one of those moments that I like: When we’ll look back at the time before and wonder how we were so naive about everything. In this case, we’ll think about when we thought computer viruses were just things that …

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A Bad Day for Social Media

You may be forgiven for thinking I’m a fan of social media, and, in particular, Twitter. Headlines like “Twitter: the future of news” and “Twitter, the best thing since the invention of the thong” may have given the misleading impression I thought Twitter was a good thing. In which case I apologize. The truth is …

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Podcast: Bacteria at Your Fingertips

Here’s another podcast from the BBC’s World Business Report: this one is on how to prevent the gunk in keyboards from killing you, and it derives from a Loose Wire piece I did for WSJ.com and The WSJ Asia on September 30. (Subscription only, I’m afraid.) Here’s a snippet: The gunk in your keyboard could …

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This week’s column – Beat the bugs

This week’s Loose Wire column is about cleaning viruses: IF YOUR COMPUTER is infected by a virus, Trojan, worm or some other nasty slice of code, never fear: Worst comes to worst, you can call on a 60-year-old retired Australian lab technician who goes by the on-line nickname of Pancake. Though he wouldn’t put it …

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A Directory of Virus Removal Tools

Some sites offering free tools for removing viruses, trojans and worms. Any additions/changes welcome. Symantec F-Secure McAfee and here BitDefender Kaspersky Solo Norman Hauri LiveCall Sophos TrendMicro HouseCall Panda Grisoft A directory of removal tools, organised by virus, and another.

McAfee’s Virus Report Card – Grim

It’s been a busy six months for the virus-writing folk. McAfee says the first half of this year has seen more serious viruses than in the whole of last year (sorry, no URL available yet). A large part of this has been the war between the Bagle and Netsky authors, a war that has seen …

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Do Anti-Virus Companies Love Viruses?

Are anti-virus companies behind the viruses? Avecho, Britain’s ‘complete worry-free mail service’, reckons “the world needs to wake up to the fact that the anti-virus industry is not an anti-virus industry, it is a definition-selling industry and they just love these viruses. The more afraid you are, the more money you spend with them.” This …

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Homeland Virus Alerts – What Happened?

The big anti-virus vendors often stand accused (rightly) of exaggerating the danger and impact of viruses; Not surprising they do that, they make money out of protecting people from viruses. But why would the U.S. government do it? Here’s a great piece by Mary Landesman of about.com complaining about US CERT, a newly formed partnership between the …

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What Is This Virus REALLY All About?

Further to my outburst about how network administrators and anti-virus companies may be making the whole MyDoom thing worse, here’s a similar take, albeit more detailed and informed than mine, from Attrition.org. The message: Treat all emails ‘notifying’ you that you have a virus as spam and inform the administrator/company/ISP accordingly. Thanks to the excellent …

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Happy Birthday, SoBig

A press release from email security folks MessageLabs points out that tomorrow is the first anniversary of the SoBig.A worm’s debut. SoBig.A (the A bit means it was the first of a stream of worms that were somehow based on the SoBig worm) wasn’t just any kind of worm, MessageLabs point out. SoBig.A was unique …

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