Microsoft and the War on Malware

February 17, 2009

Onsite computer Services in New Orleans regularly encounters the malware du jour on Microsoft business client PCs, servers and networks. In the past we’ve encountered a plethora of computer worms, including the noteworthy Blaster, MyDoom, Sobig, Sasser, Conficker, and Downadup. Malware can be programmed to email spam, steal data, and provide remote control to dastardly malicious hackers. Generally, the worms self-replicate among network computers that are not protected with TIMELY Windows security patches.   Microsoft usually makes their updates available on the second Tuesday of each month; however Microsoft can provide updates at any time a threat is deemed critical.

Everyone using a Microsoft product connected to the Internet encounters the updates. When updates are available, a yellow security shield will appear in the tray, located on the extreme lower right of the desktop. Many users are not aware of the update process. They fail to actively install updates by clicking on the shield and accessing the Microsoft update program. These unprotected PC are most vulnerable to malware infection. From our experience the damage caused by some infections can be expensive in lost data, lost productivity, and IT expense.

Occasionally, if the update addresses a critical security situation, than you’ll discover your PC automatically rebooted. From the complaints of a few clients, the reboot following the security download and update from Microsoft can result in lost data. Microsoft is active battling the worm and its creators, along with the US Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, and several private firms involved with domain name registration, internet companies, and schools. Microsoft has a $5 Million reward program for information that yields arrests and convictions of malware authors.

In 2005, Microsoft paid $250,000 to two informants who identified the author of Sasser. The information they provided helped the German government arrest and incarcerate the creator of Sasser. Microsoft is also offering $250,000 rewards for information leading to arrest and conviction of the creators of other worm threats. Thus far no one has identified the creators of Sobig, MyDoom, and Blaster. Microsoft wants hackers to take note – $250,000 is significant motivation to inspire informants in the present economic climate.

If you’re searching for New Orleans computer service or repair of your Microsoft based system or network, then call the Microsoft specialists at 504-469-6991. Onsite Computer Services, Inc. in New Orleans

You may also be interested in Onsite Computer’s Blog.

This New Orleans On-Site Computer Service post was provided by Eli Lucas. Eli can be reached at eli@onsitenola.com. Onsite Computer serves the Microsoft computing needs of small businesses throughout the Greater New Orleans area including Uptown, Lakeview, Broadmoor, Mid-City, Metairie, Jefferson, Kenner, Westbank, French Quarter, and the Warehouse District. Please visit our website for New Orleans Computer Service.

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