Two Arrested in U.S. Computer Worm Probe
By MARK SHERMAN, Associated Press Writer
Authorities in Morocco and Turkey have arrested two
people believed responsible for a computer worm that
infected networks at U.S. companies and government
agencies earlier this month.
Farid Essebar, 18, was arrested in Morocco, while
Atilla Ekici, 21, was arrested in Turkey on Thursday,
Louis M. Riegel, the FBI's assistant director for
cyber crimes, said Friday. They will be prosecuted in
those countries, Riegel said.
Essebar wrote the code that attacked computers that
run Miscrosoft Corp. operating systems and Ekici paid
him for it, Riegel said. It's unclear they ever met,
"but they certainly knew each other via the Internet,"
Riegel said he does not know how much money changed
hands. Miscrosoft and FBI officials also declined to
estimate the monetary damage done by the Zotob worm
and its variations.
The pair also is believed responsible for an earlier
worm, Mytob, that first showed up in February, Riegel
The Zotob worm and its variations targeted computers
that run Microsoft Corp. operating systems, with
Windows 2000 users most seriously affected.
The worm disrupted computer operations in mid-August
at several large news organizations, including The
Associated Press, ABC, CNN, and The New York Times;
such companies as heavy-equipment maker Caterpillar
Inc.; and the federal Immigration and Customs
Microsoft played a large role in locating the
suspects, said Riegel and Microsoft general counsel
The worm emerged just a week after the software giant
had warned of a security flaw and released a
"critical" patch for it, which is most severe on
Windows 2000 systems. Those computers can be accessed
remotely through the operating system's "Plug and
Protective patches, plus instructions for cleansing
infected systems, are available on the company's Web
Zotob and its variations can attack a computer without
needing to open any software, so some users would be
infected without knowing it.
Experts said the damage probably wouldn't be
substantial because most companies made the necessary
software fixes quickly.
Windows 2000 also is more than five years old, and
Microsoft has released several new versions of its
operating system and security overhauls since then,
further limiting the exposure.
Invite your friends to get linked in to career & business power!
Show that you are linked in to Linkedin POWER, too!
Start your day with Yahoo! - make it your home page
|Business finance course||Business to business finance||Small business finance|
|Business finance consultant||Business finance magazine||Business finance schools|
YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
- Visit your group "LinkedinBlogger" on the web.
- To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
- Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.