Security

Search for 'Conficker' Could Lure Virus

Symantec is warning Web users that searching for information on computer viruses such as Conficker could put them at risk of unintentionally downloading the virus on to their PC.

Graphic: Diego Aguirre
Conficker targets a flaw in Windows Server and despite Microsoft releasing an emergency patch and urging all Web users to download it, many machines remain unprotected.

According to the security vendor, searching for 'conficker' in a number of the Web's most popular search engines brings up a number of hoax Websites that actually host the virus and infect any users that navigate to the site.

Symantec warns Web users the best course of action is to use software that will block Web pages such as these from being visited.

"Be careful with the links you follow. A sincere effort of keeping abreast with the latest security information might contain some unwelcome surprises," the security firm added.

A third version of the virus was also discovered this month and security researchers believe it may cause problems on April Fools Day.

"It's set to go off April 1, 2009 and Conficker will generate 50,000 URLS daily," said Computer Associates director of threat research, Don DeBolt.

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