Security researchers today offered another tantalizing clue about the possible origins of the notorious Stuxnet worm, but cautioned against reading too much from the obscure tea leaves. In a paper released today and presented at a Vancouver, British Columbia security conference, a trio of Symantec researchers noted that Stuxnet includes references in its code to the 1979 execution of a prominent Jewish Iranian businessman. Buried in Stuxnet's code is a marker with the digits "19790509" that the researchers believe is a "do-not infect" indicator. If the marker equals that value, Stuxnet stops in its tracks, and does not infect the targeted PC. The researchers -- Nicolas Falliere, Liam O Murchu and Eric Chen -- speculated that the marker represents a date: May 9, 1979. "While on May 9, 1979, a variety of historical events occurred, according to Wikipedia "Habib Elghanian was executed by a firing squad in Tehran sending shock waves through the closely knit Iranian Jewish community," the researchers wrote.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Posted by JillDine at 2:41 AM