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We the CERT/CC

Week of July 29, 2001

We the CERT/CC, along with other organizations listed below are
jointly publishing this alert about a serious threat to the Internet

For Immediate Release: 3:00 PM EDT July 29, 2001

A Very Real and Present Threat to the Internet: July 31 Deadline For

Summary: The Code Red Worm and mutations of the worm pose a
continued and serious threat to Internet users. Immediate action is
required to combat this threat. Users who have deployed software
that is vulnerable to the worm (Microsoft IIS Versions 4.0 and 5.0)
must install, if they have not done so already, a vital security

How Big Is The Problem?

On July 19, the Code Red worm infected more than 250,000 systems in
just 9 hours. The worm scans the Internet, identifies vulnerable
systems, and infects these systems by installing itself. Each newly
installed worm joins all the others causing the rate of scanning to
grow rapidly. This uncontrolled growth in scanning directly
decreases the speed of the Internet and can cause sporadic but
widespread outages among all types of systems. Code Red is likely to
start spreading again on July 31st, 2001 8:00 PM EDT and has mutated
so that it may be even more dangerous. This spread has the potential
to disrupt business and personal use of the Internet for
applications such as electronic commerce, email and entertainment.

Who Must Act?

Every organization or person who has Windows NT or Windows 2000
systems AND the IIS web server software may be vulnerable. IIS is
installed automatically for many applications. If you are not
certain, follow the instructions attached to determine whether you
are running IIS 4.0 or 5.0. If you are using Windows 95, Windows 98,
or Windows Me, there is no action that you need to take in response
to this alert.

What To Do If You Are Vulnerable?

a. To rid your machine of the current worm, reboot your computer.
b. To protect your system from re-infection: Install Microsoft?s
   patch for the Code Red vulnerability problem:

   * Windows NT version 4.0:
   * Windows 2000 Professional, Server and Advanced Server:

Step-by-step instructions for these actions are posted at


Microsoft's description of the patch and its installation, and the
vulnerability it addresses is posted at:


Because of the importance of this threat, this alert is being made
jointly by:

The National Infrastructure Protection Center
Federal Computer Incident Response Center (FedCIRC)
Information Technology Association of America (ITAA)
CERT Coordination Center
SANS Institute
Internet Security Systems
Internet Security Alliance
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