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Zombie spotted at Hbg. water plant?

November 1, 2006

From Joris Evers at CNET News’ Security Blog … Is this how the Dawn of the Dead sequel will start? With something in the water? :

A PC at a Harrisburg, Pa., water filtration plant was commandeered by hackers, according to a published news report.

The FBI in Philadelphia is investigating how a hacker bypassed security and compromised the computer, FBI Special Agent Jerri Williams told ABC News, according to a UPI report Tuesday.

The hackers apparently broke into the PC not to disrupt the plant’s operation, but to use the computer to send spam or pirated software, according to the report.

If the report is correct, it means the PC was turned into what’s popularly called a zombie, a commandeered computer at the beck and call of the hacker. Such zombies are often networked by hackers into so-called botnets and rented out for relaying spam and installing malicious software.

The hacker originally gained access by tapping into an employee’s laptop, according to the UPI report. Since the intrusion, the plant has changed all passwords to the system and eliminated home access to the system, the report said.

For those who suspect their PC might be one of the undead…. check out this article from USA Today.

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