Microsoft steps up fight against Internet piracy

Microsoft Corp. said that it has joined with law enforcement and several software companies to fight software piracy and on-line fraud around the world. In a statement, the company said that it has assisted enforcement agencies that have taken action against organized criminal counterfeiters in 22 countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, Colombia and Germany.

In addition, Microsoft has sought the immediate removal of alleged counterfeit and illegal software offerings from Internet sites and auctions, bringing the number of takedowns to more than 47,000 in six months and 88,000 in the past two years, according to the statement. Launched just over six months ago, Microsoft’s Internet Scanning Tool, which runs around the clock to identify illegal on-line offerings, has allowed Microsoft to find Web pirates faster than was previously possible, the company said.

Symantec unveils systems management suite

Software developer Symantec Corp. has launched an upgraded version of its PC management tool Ghost, called Ghost Enterprise Edition 7.0.

Ghost 7.0, which competes with products such as PowerQuest Corp.’s Drive Image Pro., will provide IT administrators with the ability to configure, clone and back-up computers remotely, the Cupertino, Calif.-based company said.

New worm targets unprotected Linux systems

Security analysts recently warned that another worm is hunting the Internet for Linux systems left unprotected against several well-publicized vulnerabilities, including one commonly found in Version 7.0 of Durham, N.C.-based Red Hat Inc.’s Linux release.

Known as Adore, the new worm is the third found to be targeting Linux servers since January, following earlier ones called Ramen and Lion. The newest worm is similar to Ramen and Lion in the way it acts. Adore creates back doors in computers based on the open-source Linux software, then automatically transmits configuration data and other identifying information about the compromised systems to four e-mail addresses.