Code Red worms into Hotmail servers

User accounts 'remain secure'


Microsoft has admitted that some of its Hotmail servers have been infected with the Code Red worm.

But no user email accounts or personal data have been compromised by the attack, Microsoft spokesman Jim Desler said, according to reports. Nevertheless, he promised that Microsoft would conduct an audit of its Hotmail systems to make sure they are safe.

The embarassing security blunder is made worse for the software giant because it has campaigned so vigorously to patch the now well-known hole in its IIS Web server software that the Code Red worm exploits.

Last month Microsoft's Windows Update site (which among other things gives links to security patches) was also hit by Code Red.

It's not clear if Hotmail was hit by the first Code Red virus or a more virulent strain of the worm, Code Red II, which first appeared last week and has the potential to give attackers system level access to vulnerable machines.

Paul Rogers, a network security analyst at MIS Corporate Defence, said it was unlikely that individual e-mail accounts had been hacked into because of the attack.

Hotmail is configured with a Domain Name Server system that features round-robin load balancing.

This means that every time a user logs in they do so through a different IP address which means, according to Rogers, that it be "difficult to resolve" a url associated with a user's account, making it hard to hack into email accounts.

At the time of writing, Hotmail appears to be up and running and there's nothing on the site giving any indication that an attack has taken place. ®


Other stories you might like

  • Want to buy your own piece of the Pi? No 'urgency' says Upton of the listing rumours

    A British success story... what happens next?

    Industry talk is continuing to circulate regarding a possible listing for the UK makers of the diminutive Raspberry Pi computer.

    Over the weekend, UK newspaper The Telegraph reported that a spring listing could be in the offing, with a valuation of more than £370m slapped onto the computer maker.

    Pi boss, Eben Upton, described the article as "interesting" in an email to The Register today, before repeating that "we're always looking at ways to fund the future growth of the business, but the $45m we raised in September has taken some of the urgency out of that."

    Continue reading
  • JetBrains embraces remote development with new IDE for multiple programming languages

    Security, collaboration, flexible working: Fleet does it all, says project lead

    JetBrains has introduced remote development for its range of IDEs as well as previewing a new IDE called Fleet, which will form the basis for fresh tools covering all major programming languages.

    JetBrains has a core IDE used for the IntelliJ IDEA Java tool as well other IDEs such as Android Studio, the official programming environment for Google Android, PyCharm for Python, Rider for C#, and so on. The IDEs run on the Java virtual machine (JVM) and are coded using Java and Kotlin, the latter being primarily a JVM language but with options for compiling to JavaScript or native code.

    Fleet is "both an IDE and a lightweight code editor," said the company in its product announcement, suggesting perhaps that it is feeling some pressure from the success of Microsoft's Visual Studio Code, which is an extensible code editor. Initial language support is for Java, Kotlin, Go, Python, Rust, and JavaScript, though other languages such as C# will follow. Again like VS Code, Fleet can run on a local machine or on a remote server. The new IDE uses technology developed for IntelliJ such as its code-processing engine for features such as code completion and refactoring.

    Continue reading
  • Nextcloud and cloud chums fire off competition complaint to the EU over Microsoft bundling OneDrive with Windows

    No, it isn't the limited levels of storage that have irked European businesses

    EU software and cloud businesses have joined Nextcloud in filing a complaint with the European Commission regarding Microsoft's alleged anti-competitive behaviour over the bundling of its OS with online services.

    The issue is OneDrive and Microsoft's habit of packaging it (and other services such as Teams) with Windows software.

    Nextcloud sells on-premises collaboration platforms that it claims combine "the convenience and ease of use of consumer-grade solutions like Dropbox and Google Drive with the security, privacy and control business needs." Microsoft's cloud storage system, OneDrive, is conspicuous by its absence.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021