A botnet virus put the internet out of action for three days last weekend at a Dutch air force base, reports internet website Webwereld. A source says computers at the base in Gilze-Rijen were recruited for the Rustock botnet which was dismantled at the end of March. Computers at a second base, which is officially out of commission, Soesterberg, also experienced problems.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Defence confirms that connections were shut down after an active botnet virus was found in IP addresses used by military personnel. The computers in question are stand alone computers used privately by soldiers in their rooms on an ordinary internet connection. They were not ministry of defence network computers. The problem became apparent when the infected computers started sending huge quantities of spam.
A spokesperson for one of the bases stressed that internal computer systems are strictly separate from computers which have an open connection with the internet. The responsibility for security of privately owned computers is up to the soldiers themselves. An anonymous source told Webwereld that there are insufficient funds to take measures to secure privately-used internet connections. According to the website, the Ministry of Defence denies this is so.
Similar problems about poor internet security have been reported in the past.
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