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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Microsoft Sees Barely a Ripple From 2nd Wave of 'Blaster'

SEATTLE -- The second wave of an Internet attack by the "blaster" worm barely caused a ripple.

Microsoft Corp. said late last week that it had no major problems from the worm's attempt to turn thousands of infected computers into instruments targeting the software company's network.

The Redmond, Washington-based company had not noticed any extraordinary network congestion, spokesman Sean Sundwall said. There were also no reports of customers having major problems accessing the targeted web site, which houses a software patch that fixes the flaw exploited by the worm.

"So far we have seen no impact on our web sites or any other web sites due to the 'blaster' worm," Sundwall said.

The virus-like infection, also dubbed "LovSan" or "MSBlast," exploits a flaw in most current versions of Microsoft's Windows operating system for personal computers, laptops and server computers. Although Microsoft posted a software patch July 16 to fix the flaw, many users failed to download it, leaving them vulnerable.

The infection caused computers to reboot frequently or disrupt users' browsing on the Internet. But it also packed a second punch.

Computer experts said starting at 12:01 a.m. local time Saturday, infected computers would in effect turn into a legion of zombies instructed to repeatedly call up a Microsoft web site that houses the software patch.

But the exploiters of the Microsoft flaw made a mistake themselves. The worm instructed computers to call up windowsupdate.com -- an incorrect address for reaching the actual site that houses the software patch. Microsoft has long redirected those who visited that incorrect address to the real site -- windowsupdate.microsoft.com. The company disabled the automatic redirection Thursday in preparation for the onslaught of infected computers.