Y2K alert from www.CSIS.org important review

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Malicious Viruses:

The most dangerous "strains" of millennium viruses are being developed by groups that are small, well financed, and located outside of the United States. In some cases, the programmers who design the viruses have set up companies in neutral countries that do software/computer consulting. Profits from their legitimate activities are then used to finance more nefarious projects.

The malicious millennium viruses, if left unchecked, could cause serious damage to various areas of the international infrastructure, especially the international telecommunications infrastructure. One virus, for example, specifically targets major companies' telephone Electronic Switching Systems, randomly rerouting calls. Three other malicious viruses will actually lock a processor in a divide by zero loop, which, if left running for a sufficient amount of time, will overheat the Central Processing Unit, causing it to melt down and effectively reducing the computer to scrap metal. Similarly, a different virus will wreck monitors by tampering with the video card, causing them to overheat and be destroyed.

Another virus effects applied industrial systems that monitor key processes such as conveyer belt operations, the temperature regulation in power plants, labeling of food products, and even payroll systems. What the virus does is disregard the true information, inserting random quotes where information is requested. This could cause the total recall of a product because it was falsely labeled to be safe for children, when in actual fact it is not.

Lastly, there are two viruses that affect the Domain Name Service (DNS) automated directory assistance for the Internet, linking the name of a web site with the corresponding Internet Protocol (IP) address. These two viruses are non memory resident parasites, meaning that they need an application that is integrated in the DNS server in order to exist. These parasite viruses shuffle the directory systems (the resolution tables) so that the web sites no longer match their IP numbers. As a result, for example, rather than reaching the CNN web site, a totally different web site is accessed. As systems security expert, Sam Schubert, points out, "depending on which DNS server is targeted, viruses of this nature have the potential of crippling the Internet."

Awareness a Priority:

The viruses briefly described above are just a few examples of the types of viruses that are being developed and that are set to activate in the confusing environment of the millennium change over. About 98 percent of them, both benign and those with system lethal intent, originate outside U.S. borders i.e. outside U.S. control. This makes it extremely difficult to get a handle on the problem, which is why awareness needs to be a priority.

If several of the malicious viruses were to hit at the same time as wide spread Y2K failures, the stress on the system would be severe. It would take days, more likely months, to clean up and, in some cases, rebuild the system. Anti-virus software may not protect against these viruses since the majority of them have not been studied and included in the anti-virus software. The only way to mitigate possible affects is through heightened awareness and constant vigilance.

Return to the Y2K Risk Assessment Task Force home page

-- Don (Don@aol.com), December 26, 1999


These virii are being facilitate through the use of virus carrying chihuahuas. These small mexican dogs may appear cute at first, but don't mistake their serious intentions. They are trained computer experts and have infiltrated John Koskinen's organization at every level. In fact, Koskinen himself was recently heard muttering something about "chalupas"!

-- Gordon (g_gecko_69@hotmail.com), December 26, 1999.

"Drop the chalupa! Drop it I say"

-- justme (justme@myhouse.com), December 26, 1999.

Gosh, now the IP's (I just learned about them on this forum) might be no-nos, too? Are any/all of you going off the Net on the 31st.? I keep hearing warnings and don't know what to do. If MIT, (smart people, so I hear), is unplugging, should all of us do the same? I was so looking forward to tuning in via this forum, but now I don't know what to do.

-- Queen of Hearts (alice@wonder.land), December 26, 1999.

"Three other malicious viruses will actually lock a processor in a divide by zero loop, which, if left running for a sufficient amount of time, will overheat the Central Processing Unit, causing it to melt down and effectively reducing the computer to scrap metal."

Good grief, when will that damned "Good Times!" hoax DIE DIE DIE?????

-- Ron Schwarz (rs@clubvb.com.delete.this), December 26, 1999.

New IPO on Thursday. smokesignals.com

-- Mike Lang (webflier@erols.com), December 26, 1999.

The virus has been 27 years in the petri dish-its' gestation period began on the day DOD told IBM that no, they really didn't want to reformat to four digit date expression. Please don't be snookered by the rash of 'virus' alerts. They just need something and someone else to blame the upcoming mess on-negligence and non-feasance are the name of this particular strain.

-- Blew5M (gaf@mindspring.com), December 26, 1999.

Telephone companies have made it extremely difficult to get into their switching systems. To plant a virus would probably require the cooperation of someone on the inside.

-- Dave (dannco@hotmail.com), December 27, 1999.

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