Conficker is a computer worm that can infect your computer and several other computers in the network and use them for cyber crimes. The scariest aspect of this bug is that it can spread between computers across a network automatically, without any human involvement. Fixing the Conficker problem can get a little trickier. But here are some tips on how you can remove the Conficker worm from your PC.
If your computer is infected, you may not be able to download certain removal tools and security products like the Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool or access Microsoft Update and other such Websites. In case you are unable to access these tools, you can try using the Windows Live OneCare Safety Scanner, or better still, ask a friend — whose PC’s not infected — to download a removal tool from Microsoft or any antivirus vendors. Your friend should then email the tool to you.
You can also check free Conficker removal tools on the website of the Conficker Working Group, a group of companies fighting the bug. The removal tools will work on their own for the most part, scanning your system and removing the worm.
A point to remember: In an infected machine, Conficker disables the running of removal tools having “Conficker” in the name. So you might have to change the file name prior to running the program. The program will show instructions if you need to do this. A number of antivirus vendors have already altered the names assigned to their removal tools to deceive the Conficker worm into allowing the program to run.
Businesses however face a bigger challenge in detecting Conficker, because the virus employs yet another method to avoid being detected. Once the bug attacks a machine, it implements its own version of the Microsoft patch to repair the vulnerability Conficker took advantage of in the first place.
Thus, if a business runs a standard network scan, searching for machines that are unpatched, the result might show no returns even though certain computers on the network are infected. To avoid such mishaps, antivirus vendors should enable the scans to search deeper into the machines on the network.