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Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Zotob worm finds its path limited

A new worm that was unleashed over the weekend affects only a limited group of Windows users and has not wreaked any widespread havoc, according to Trend Micro.

As of Monday morning on the West Coast, the original Zotob.A had infected about 50 computers worldwide, and the first variant, Zotob.B, had compromised about 1,000 systems, the antivirus software maker said.

"There are not that many infections," said David Perry, director of global education at Trend Micro.

The worm, which has spawned at least two variants, exploits a hole in the plug-and-play feature in the Windows operating system. It surfaced only days after Microsoft offered a fix for the "critical" bug as part of its monthly patching cycle.

While early reports on Zotob suggested it was spreading rapidly, the impact of the worm has actually been restricted because it targets PCs running Windows 2000, an older version of the software, Microsoft said. It poses no threat to computers running the newer Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, the company added.

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