Zscaler Provides Proactive Protection from Conficker/Downadup Worm
Santa Clare, California, January 19, 2009
Zscaler, the industry-first, multi-tenant SaaS security service, announced today that it has deployed proactive protections to combat the rapidly spreading Conficker (aka Downadup) worm. A recent variant of the Conficker worm has spread rapidly over the past week, infecting millions of computers worldwide.
Despite patches having been available from Microsoft since October 2008 for the primary attack vector, Conficker propagates in multiple ways by additionally identifying vulnerable machines through open network shares, weak passwords and connected removable storage devices. Lack of inspection of Internet-bound botnet command and control traffic, poor patch management and ineffective anti-virus signatures has all contributed to the spread of the worm.
“Conficker has succeeded in rapidly propagating due to poor enterprise security controls and the intelligent design of the worm itself,” according to Michael Sutton, VP, Security Research. “Beyond attacking other vulnerable computers, infected machines are also connecting back to command and control servers, creating a powerful botnet army for those responsible for this attack.”
Conficker’s “phone home” feature enables it to receive further orders to wreak havoc. The orders could be to download malicious code from random drop points which are frequently changing.
“As an in-the-cloud security provider, by inspecting all web traffic, Zscaler can identify and block web related activity of the Conficker worm hence protecting Zscaler clients globally with no additional effort required on their part,” said Jay Chaudhry, Zscaler's CEO. “The Zscaler security service not only prevents further propagation of Conficker but also empowers enterprises to identify machines infested with bots on their network.”