The Conficker worm is "a nasty piece of work," said Dwight Silverman in the Houston Chronicle. "It's insidiously crafted to take control of an infected Windows PC"—and millions of Microsoft users could be affected. "What's unknown is what Conficker is designed to do"—and we're expected to find out on April Fool's Day.
"There's a lot of hype about this latest piece of malware," said Adrian Kingsley-Hughes in ZDNET, but the situation is likely far less dire than the antivirus companies that are using the April 1 trigger date to sell security fixes would have you believe. More than half of the infections appear to be in China, Brazil, Russia, India, and Argentina—so Americans have "dodged the bullet."
Still, there's no reason to chance it, said Bobbie Johnson in Britain's The Guardian. "The easiest way to conduct a quick check is to try and visit pages from antivirus companies Symantec and McAfee," which Conficker blocks. "If you can't get there, the chances are you've been infected," but you'll be okay if you download a removal program from a source you trust.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The real story behind Deliver Us From Evil
- How the South's ugly racial history is haunting ObamaCare
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- If Democrats abandon immigration reform after Tuesday's likely loss, they will turn 2016 into a debacle
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- Stop making fun of philosophy and read some philosophy
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- What if Leo Strauss was right?
- Beware of Splenda: The backlash against artificial sugars
- Feast your eyes on this beautiful linguistic family tree
Subscribe to the Week