An Internet worm detected Monday is spreading around the world like wildfire. The worm has has been spreading rapidly across the Internet, according to the CERT Coordination Center, a government funded security watchdog group at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

The worm instructs infected computers to assault the Microsoft Update servers continuously after 12:01 a.m., August 16. Such an attack, launched by thousands of computers with high-speed connections, would prevent users from being able to reach the service, experts said. The worm is instructed to continue doing this until December 31, 2003, after which it will attack the update site on the 16th of every month.

“We’re talking on the order of potentially hundreds of thousands of machines hit with this already,” said Jeff Havrilla, an Internet security analyst at CERT. “The infection rate is still climbing, so this is far from over.”

Microsoft is taking precautions to protect their site. Users of Windows 2000 and XP should make certain that their virus protection software is up to date, and increase the scan rate on their software to every one to three days, or even daily during the danger period.

Some ancient technology is still a mystery today.

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