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Why WannaCry and other computer worms may inherit the earth
This article is part of the Information Security magazine issue of September 2017, Vol. 19, No. 7
Using a self-replicating computer program to deliver malware on a target network is an old trick. Like most things on the internet, computer worms come from an innocent enough past. Over time, the use of worms moved down a predictable path, from computer-savvy engineers who were experimenting to the criminal realm to the rise of nation-sponsored cyberespionage groups. Why should this matter to CISOs? As global cyberattacks have exploded in recent months, computer worms are causing collateral damage, not only to nation-states, but to corporate valuations and financial performance. In June, FedEx warned that the Petya cyberattack, which disrupted operations at its TNT Express subsidiary, may have "material impact" on the company's 2017 financial performance. Merck & Co. Inc., another victim of the June attack, issued a similar warning. A computer worm is similar to a computer virus, but it has distinct characteristics. Unlike spear-phishing emails, worms do not require a delivery system; instead, they attack the ports and ...
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Features in this issue
Should products intercept Transport Layer Security connections to gain visibility into network traffic? A new study by researchers and U.S.-CERT warn against it.
With years of cybersecurity and military IT experience, the District of Columbia's first information security officer brings a well-developed toolkit to the job.
A vast majority of APT attacks and malware delivery happens via spear phishing. But worms have always had a place in the toolkit when the delivery method fit the mission.
Columns in this issue
Security is a hot topic for media outlets that report on stock markets as companies founder on corporate earnings. The financial fallout of global malware is a call to action.
The CEO of a global pen tester used to work for the New York Yankees. Find out how Jennifer Steffens went from sports marketing to head of a security service provider.