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Monday, October 11, 2010

Stuxnet : A Milestone in Malicious Code History

1. Stuxnet,the internet worm,intent of which was thought to effect Iran's nuclear programme has now taken a U Turn towards HINDUSTAN....

2. American cyber warfare expert Jeffrey Carr has assured the GoI,that China the originator of this worm which has terrorised the world since Mid 2010. Ascribing the break down of ISRO's INSAT 4B satellite a few months ago ,Carr said it is China which gained from the satellite failure. Although he re affirms that the conclusions are not definite.Invariably the effected systems are loaded with a Siemens software which have been specifically targetted to which Siemens has released a detection and removal tool.Siemens recommends installing the Microsoft patch for vulnerabilities and disallowing the use of third-party USB sticks.It is further contemplated that incorrect remotion of the worm could cause irrepairable damage.

3. Jeffrey Carr says "The satellite in question (INSAT 4B) suffered the power `glitch' in an unexplained fashion and it's failure served another state's advantage -- in this case China," he said.The connecting link between INSAT 4B and Stuxnet is that the Siemens software is used in ISRO's Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre ie S7-400 PLC and SIMATIC WinCC.Something about Stuxnet...these attack Windows systems using four zero-day attacks and targets systems using Siemens' WinCC/PCS 7 SCADA software. It is initially spread using infected USB flash drives. Once inside the system it uses the default passwords to command the software.Few intretsing things about this :

- Half a megabyte in size 
- Written in different programming languages (including C and C++) 
- Digitally signed with two authentic certificates which were stolen from two certification authorities (JMicron and Realtek) which helped it remain undetected for a relatively long period of time. - Capabable to upgrade via peer to peer.
- Eric Byres, an expert in maintaining & troubleshooting Siemens systems, expects that writing the code would have taken many man-months.

4. Stuxnet is a threat aiming a specific industrial control system such as a gas pipeline,satellite systems & power plants. The ultimate goal of Stuxnet is to sabotage the facility by reprogramming programmable logic controllers (PLCs) to operate as the attackers intend them to, most likely out of their working and identified boundaries.This worm represents the first of many milestones in malicious code history ,it is the first to exploit four 0-day vulnerabilities, compromise two digital certificates, and inject code into industrial control systems and hide the code from the operator. Whether Stuxnet will usher in a new generation of malicious code attacks towards real-world infrastructure,overshadowing the vast majority of current attacks affecting more virtual or individual assets—or if it is a once- in-a-decade occurrence remains to be seen.Stuxnet is of such great complexity requiring significant resources to develop—that few attackers will be capable of producing a similar threat, to such an extent that we would not expect masses of threats of similar in sophistication to suddenly appear. However, Stuxnet has highlighted direct-attack attempts on critical infrastructure are possible and not just theory or movie plotlines.The real-world implications of Stuxnet are beyond any threat we have seen in the past. 

5. When is India actually going to work for itself rather then performing across the globe...y is the world telling us that we are effected here...even in the case of SHADOWS IN THE CLOUD...we were told by the Shadow server foundation that our institutes have been compromised inspite of the fact that we have all it takes to take the IT world by storm...but we are all working for ourselves...and not for own country...cream is flowing out and getting outsorced..IT IS ACTUALLY SAD THAT THE WORLD KNOWS INDIA'S POTENTIAL BUT THE INDIANS DONT KNOW THIER OWN.....

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