Media Giddy over Linux Worm.

Posted by tadelste on Nov 8, 2005 8:18 AM EDT; By Tom Adelstein
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You might think that the sky is falling the way the media has gone on a feeding frenzy related to a Linux worm. Sorry to disappoint you, but the worm will hardly affect the user base. It's not like the "Code Red" worm which self-replicated malicious code that exploited a known vulnerability in Microsoft IIS servers (CA-2001-13). Rumor has it, Wal-Mart didn't cope with it very well.

Exploit.Linux. and Small.x have put some excitement into the world of anti-virus companies. Suddenly, people might get scared and buy anti-virus offerings. But in the circles where Linux folks run, it doesn't even warrant a shoulder shrug.

One of readers writes: "You'd have to be completely unfirewalled to see damage. The remote control opens on ports 7111 and 7222, and it doesn't do anything local except open a listener on one or the other of those ports (there are (so far) two variants, the only reported difference being that port number). If you (as I do) set your machines up with French Foreign Legion firewalling rules ("you shall do nothing except") then this won't be a problem for you.

"I'm also seeing a lot of ssh login attempts recently, on those few machines I have which still run sshd on the default port."

One of our editors then replies, "It's a pretty punky threat. Poor little feeble thing."

Followed by: "Perhaps we can ask the authors to publish the source, so we can have a real threat for a change?"

Our technical media has gone from reporting on technology to acting like PAPARAZZI .

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