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Anti-Computer Virus Efforts Appear Successful

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Aug. 2, 2001 – DoD efforts to protect military computers against the so-called Code Red 'worm' virus seem successful, so far.

Since July 31, DoD technicians have observed a "great increase" of activity on DoD computer servers, Pentagon spokesperson Navy Rear Adm. Craig Quigley told reporters Aug. 2. "We attribute that to the Code Red 'worm,'" he said.

"We've taken a variety of actions to watch that very carefully, to mitigate the effect," Quigley added. Some DoD network servers have been taken off line as a safety precaution, he noted.

Over the past several days, DoD computer technicians have installed special programs, or "patches," that prevent the virus from spreading, which can lead to the shutdown of entire systems.

"We think we've been largely successful in downloading and installing the patch," Quigley said. However, he noted, patches don't stop virus "threads" from probing servers.

"You keep that up long enough, and you will 'crash' the server," he said. The patch prevents department computers from becoming infected and unwittingly joining in on attacks against other servers.

"We don't know of any long-term damage, yet, that has been done. It is this volume of activity that has flowed into our servers," Quigley said. "We're watching it very carefully. We don't think we're out of the woods, yet."

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Related Sites:
DoD News Briefing, Aug. 2, 2001

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