Conficker worm found on body cams shipped to US police departments

Conficker worm found on body cams shipped to US police departments

By Lee Mathews Nov. 16, 2015 11:17 am martel-body-cam

One of the biggest security threats of the last decade is trying hard to make a comeback. Someone’s been infecting police body cams with the Conficker worm.

Florida IT security firm iPower made the discovery recently. They found Conficker waiting in the shadows on Martel Frontline body cameras, and it was more than happy to infect a Windows XP virtual machine when they plugged it in. iPower didn’t give a count, but they did say that multiple cameras were infected.

For Martel, a company that takes great pride in having provided police departments with gear since 1957 and boasts about supplying the U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force, it’s not great news. They haven’t released a comment on the situation yet, but you’ve got to believe one is coming. Scores of Martel clients are probably very interested to hear how a seven-year-old worm wound up on their equipment.

Back in 2008 and 2009, Conficker was a major nuisance. It spread quickly through infected USB flash drives and its ability to spread to network shares, and some pretty sensitive targets were hit by it: the French Navy, the U.K. Ministry of Defense, the House of Commons, and Manchester Police all reported infections.

These days, not so much. Conficker made a brief reappearance in 2013 when the German government purchased 170 brand new computers that were delivered pre-infected. Other than that incident, Conficker isn’t exactly a huge threat any more. It’s extremely outdated by malware standards and every antivirus on the market should have received a definition update that detects it at least five years ago. On top of that, Microsoft pushed anti-Conficker measures to Windows — including XP — way back in 2011.

So unless you’re running a computer that runs Windows XP or Vista and you haven’t updated it in nearly half a decade, chances of a Conficker infection actually taking hold are pretty slim. It’s a distinct possibility, though. There are still plenty of Windows XP systems in use today — probably even at police departments — and some of them are bound to be vulnerable.

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