MSBlast still not blasted, says Microsoft

Last year’s MSBlast worm is still causing network congestion as many home users still haven’t cleaned it off their systems, according to reports this week.

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By  Peter Branton Published  January 7, 2004

Last year’s MSBlast worm is still causing network congestion as many home users still haven’t cleaned it off their systems, according to reports this week. Microsoft has released a tool to help users remove the worm from their systems, and is encouraging them to do so in a bid to ease congestion on the net. The tool, which is available for download from Microsoft’s site, was published on New Year’s Eve last year. The MSBlast worm, which contained code mocking Microsoft chairman Bill Gates, was released last August, and spread across the globe. Systems were hit across the Middle East, with Windows receiving reports of affected systems in Dubai, Saudi Arabia and Oman. In September the infection rate was running at as many as 30,000 systems an hour, according to security firm Network Associates, and over one million systems globally had been infected. While most corporate users have now rid themselves off the worm, it is believed that many home users are still infected, often without their knowledge. “For many users in this situation there is little indication that they are infected other than possible performance degradation,” Microsoft said in a statement. “And those infected are still actively transmitting the worm, causing internet congestion in the process.” The tool can be found on Microsoft's download site.

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