The Worm That Disabled The Pentagon

Agent.BTZ_Having the best computer security is one of the top most priority for most companies as most, if not all, of them rely on computers to operate smoothly. Banking institutions rely on secure servers to protect the money of its depositors and investments. IT companies like Google, Yahoo, AOL, and Amazon also employ the most sophisticated security software and firewall for them to deliver the services they promise to their loyal customers without a hitch. To protect the interests of their constituents and to uphold national security, government agencies also utilize the best security platform available. But there were also times that the security that these entities were using failed to protect their computer servers.  One malware which was able to infiltrate and infect the computers and servers of the Pentagon is the Agent.btz worm.

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The Agent.btz worm was able to infect the United States of America’s military network and was used to extract lots of important data. This piece of intricately written malware was first detected last 2007 but was only exposed by the media on 2008. Investigators found out that this infection started on a laptop which was left on a parking lot of a Middle East Department of Defense facility. It is believed that the worm was planted on that laptop by Russian spies. Although the government is quick to dismiss these statements.

The worm was so intricately written that the government took a long time to clean all their infected systems. They spent around 14 months to remove Agent.btz worm from every infected system and named this venture, Operation Buckshot Yankee.  This worm spreads through USB (Universal Serial Bus) flash drives and once it has settled on a terminal it will create a backdoor which is connected to a remote server and the authors of this worm, whoever they are, will be able to do the things that they want. They can disable computers, bring down servers and networks, but most importantly they can steal whatever data they want to acquire. This breach in security prompted the government to create the United States Cyber Command.

A lot of damage has been done before the US Cyber Command was able to remove Agent.btz worm and there is no telling what scale of damage it has done to our government. Some experts believe that this infection let hackers steal very important data because after the attacks Russia and China was able to release prototypes of their version of the F-22 Raptor.

After the attacks the government has been more vigilant with the use of flash drives for government used computers.

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