By Jeremy Kirk
IDG News Service
Jan 16, 2009
The U.K. Ministry of Defence is in the midst of an electronic fight with
a computer virus that rapidly spread through its computer networks
starting Jan. 6.
The virus infected computers throughout the military, including those
used by the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy, and is one of the most
severe attacks the organization has ever faced, according to a Ministry
of Defence spokeswoman.
"Obviously with a computer system of our size we are fighting off
viruses daily, but not of this scale," the spokeswoman said. "I don't
think we've ever had an instance like this before."
The virus has affected e-mail systems and Internet access but has not
jeopardized war-fighting systems, she said. Due to pre-existing security
systems, no classified or personal data was compromised, the Ministry
Just 27 percent of the Ministry's computers meet current data security
standards for holding classified information and personal data, it said
earlier this week. About 31 percent of systems meet some standards,
while the rest are being evaluated.
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