New virus quelled by ACNS

Apr 052004
Authors: Carmen Filosa

After a weekend of updating anti-virus systems, the Academic

Computing and Network Services was able to stop the spread of the

W32.Randex.gen computer virus.

Kevin Nolan, IT Specialist for ACNS, said once a computer was

infected the virus would attack other computers through network


One of the virus’ symptoms is an inability to gain access to the


According to the ACNS Web site, the virus affects Windows-based

computers and most often is successful with computers that have

blank or weak passwords.

“It’s mostly been a headache for IT staff,” Nolan said.

Nolan said this virus was challenging because the CSU campus was

one of the first places it affected.

Despite the early infection, Nolan said there is no evidence to

suggest that the virus was started at CSU or that the university

was targeted.

“Given the nature of the Internet, it could come from anywhere,”

Nolan said.

Once the virus was detected, Nolan said ACNS contacted Symantec,

the makers of the Norton Anti-Virus system.

With new updates, Symantec was able to restrict the virus’


W32.Randex.gen is just one of the several high-profile viruses

that have affected computers since February.

“We’ve definitely seen a spike,” Nolan said.

Though there are always new viruses, Nolan said it is rare that

so many become high profile in such a short period of time.

It cannot be predicted as to whether the trend will continue,

Nolan said.

“We just respond when we see them,” he said.

There are several actions that students can take to protect

their computers from not only the W32.Randex.gen virus but also all


Decreasing time online by disconnecting when the computer is not

being used will help, Nolan said.

Also being cautious when opening e-mails and always updating

computer anti-virus software will prevent the spread of computer

viruses, Nolan said.

“Folks just need to be cautious in this age of the Internet,”

Nolan said.

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