[LINK] Infected USB drives from IBM -- do you have one?

Jan Whitaker jwhit at janwhitaker.com
Fri May 21 17:59:21 AEST 2010

I know this is Friday, but I don't think this is a joke. But it is ironic!

IBM distributes virus-laden USB keys at security conference



May 21, 2010 - 5:29PM

IBM has been left with egg on its face after it distributed 
virus-laden USB keys to attendees at Australia's biggest computer 
security conference.

Delegates of the AusCERT conference, held over the past week at the 
Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast, were told about the malware 
problem in a warning email this afternoon by IBM Australia chief 
technologist Glenn Wightwick.

The incident is ironic because conference attendees include the who's 
who of the computer security world and IBM was there to show off its 
security credentials.

Some attendees may have thought they were experiencing dejavu as 
Telstra was left red-faced at the 2008 AusCERT conference for also 
distributing malware-infected USB drives.

"At the AusCERT conference this week, you may have collected a 
complimentary USB key from the IBM booth," Wightwick wrote.

"Unfortunately we have discovered that some of these USB keys 
contained malware and we suspect that all USB keys may be affected."

Wightwick said the virus spreads when the infected USB device is 
inserted into a Windows computer but noted it should be detected by 
the majority of current anti-virus products.

He instructed attendees not to use the USB key and return it to IBM's 
head office.

AusCERT attendee Tom Piotrowski, managing director of IT security 
company Unixpac, said he was left "speechless" by the incident.

"Hundreds of IT security professionals make a pilgrimage to AusCERT 
each year," he said.

"Delegates are going there to listen about the latest developments in 
security technology ... just think how big an embarrassment a boo-boo 
like this must be for IBM."

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
jwhit at janwhitaker.com
blog: http://janwhitaker.com/jansblog/
business: http://www.janwhitaker.com

Our truest response to the irrationality of the world is to paint or 
sing or write, for only in such response do we find truth.
~Madeline L'Engle, writer

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