Conficker is not a new virus. It first appeared in late 2008, but has recently received a lot of hype including a feature on 60 minutes on March 29th, 2009. The hype is mostly because there are some unknowns about the virus and because some estimates put the number of infections as high as 15 million PCs. According to Symantec less then 1% of the total infections are in the US. Approximately 29% of infections are in China, followed by Argentina, Brazil, Russia, and India. The current hype is because on April 1st, 2009 Conficker is set to contact a number of websites and download items that may cause further damage. This behaviour is not new but with so many machines infected the risk is greater then usual.
Several removal tools are available from Microsoft, Bit Defender and others. AVG and McAfee antivirus software will remove the malware automatically with a simple virus scan.
To check if you are infected:
- Download the Removal Tool from the Bit Defender website: https://www.bdtools.net (Use the Single PC version)
- Open the Zip file and extract the contents (or simply copy them) to the Desktop
- Look for the file called “bd_rem_tool_gui.exe” (or just “bd_rem_tool_gui”) and Double Click to run it.
- Click the Start button and the software will tell you very quickly if you are infected and proceed to remove Conficker if indeed you are infected.
- Run this Tool on each machine in your organization.
Preventing the infection of your PC(s) with conficker is the same as any other malware out there.
- Make sure you have Antivirus installed on your system and keep it up to date. (This alone is half the battle.)
- Make sure that automatic udates are enabled from Microsoft and that you download and apply updates when they come up in the bottom right corner of the screen.
a) XP Instructions: https://www.top-windows-tutorials.com/microsoft-windows-xp-updates.html
b) Vista Instructions: https://www.top-windows-tutorials.com/windows-vista-updates.html
- 3. Be careful when you surf the web. Don’t click on pop-ups and if a website looks “fishy” then it’s probably best to leave
DigialFire Inc. is here to help. If you have any questions about Conficker or other malware and how to protect yourself or your company don’t hesitate to call us. The average support call is 30 min. and $45 to fix a problem. That’s worth the peace of mind of knowing you’re protected. Estimates are always free.
More information on conficker:
Wikipedia article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conficker
Wall Street Journal: https://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2009/01/23/the-conficker-virus-dont-panic