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Stuxnet's Earliest Known Version Discovered and Analyzed 77

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the no-u235-for-you dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Symantec researchers have discovered an older version of the infamous Stuxnet worm that caused the disruption at Iran's nuclear facility in Natanz: Stuxnet 0.5. According to a whitepaper released by the researchers at RSA Conference 2013, Stuxnet 0.5 has first been detected in the wild in 2007 when someone submitted it to the VirusTotal malware scanning service, but has been in development as early as November 2005. Unlike Stuxnet versions 1.x that disrupted the functioning of the uranium enrichment plant by making centrifuges spin too fast or too slow, this one was meant to do so by closing valves."
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Stuxnet's Earliest Known Version Discovered and Analyzed

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  • 2005? (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    It took that long to get this damn this to do what it was supposed to do? What was it originally called, Windows Longhorn Stuxnet Edition?

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It was a government IT project. Of course it took years. Probably cost 100 times the original estimate too.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Yep, if only they hadn't hired private sector contractors to please those that complain about government inefficiency, maybe it would have gotten done in a reasonable time under a reasonable budget.

        • by OakDragon (885217)

          Wow, this derailed in a different direction than I expected. Should I skip down a few topics to get to the Jew bashing?

  • State sponsored (Score:5, Insightful)

    by schneidafunk (795759) on Wednesday February 27, 2013 @12:45PM (#43025529)
    Is there any doubt that this is government sanctioned? Who has the knowledge (or will) to write a program to disrupt centrifuges. Also this tidbit from the article: "Both the Flamer and Tilded platform code bases are different enough to suggest different developers were involved."
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by jandersen (462034)

      Whoever it was, is a complete moron, I suspect. This kind of attack can - and will - be used against everybody else in turn. And if you can interfere with the functioning of valves and other HW, then you can also find a way to cause leakage of hazardous materials.

      How about a major leak in a bio-warfare lab in the States? Would we like that?

      • by crazyjj (2598719) *

        Yes, because the American government is famous for thinking ahead carefully before it acts.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Whoever it was, is a complete moron, I suspect. This kind of attack can - and will - be used against everybody else in turn. And if you can interfere with the functioning of valves and other HW, then you can also find a way to cause leakage of hazardous materials.

        How about a major leak in a bio-warfare lab in the States? Would we like that?

        The values are in the centrifuges, not the power plant. The centrifuges are used to refine the uranium. The fact that Stuxnet moved on to interrupt the motors of the centrifuges instead of the values was pretty damn clever considering it only affected two of the models of motors (one of them manufactured in Iran).

        Now, can a virus similar to Stuxnet attack the control boards, valves, etc of *any* power plant, refinery, or whatever? Of course it can. That's why the hardcoded usernames & passwords found in

      • Mostly. It would start with interesting ideas and strongly developed characters that tell an interesting story of our time. Sadly by the time the final curtain drops in the desert outside of Las Vegas we will all be convinced that the story ran its course long ago and that the untimely appearance of the hand of god himself to trigger a nuclear detonation is the sad work of a creative mind all spent. In short the main problem that it would cause is that the extra 300 pages of padding cannot hide the lack of

      • by downhole (831621)

        I think the fallacy with this is that the techniques required to do this sort of attack are out there for anybody to discover. No matter what the US or any other country does, somebody will use it eventually. We (presuming it's the US) just have the level of technical know-how and resources to get it done sooner than most other countries. Somebody somewhere will use it against us in 20-30 years whether we use it now or not, so why not use it now and get some benefit from it while we're still the only ones t

    • Possibly, some free lancer who used to work for the company that made the specific hardware that was targeted?

      I have zero doubt that it was government sponsored, to be honest. But, you're asking a question that has at least one obvious possible answer. Hey, I can go one better with my obvious answer: that free lancer happens to be Jewish and/or a Zionist.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 27, 2013 @12:55PM (#43025673)

    When did it first jump species from laundry dryers to centrifuges?

  • 1. Amplify Plutonium-Gamma Shield
    2. Deharmonize Neptunium Impeller
    3. Calibrate Uranium-Rod Driver
    4. Set Voltage on Saturn-Class Capacitor
    5. Test Jupiter Wave Complier
  • by Anonymous Coward

    The Natanz facility that was the target of Stuxnet 0.5 and 1.0 is 300 feet below a mountain. There are normally several elevator shafts, one emergency stairway, and several additional ventilation ducts leading down to where Iran was processing uranium ore from 3.5% (power reactor grade) to 20% (weapons grade). Unfortunately 3 days before the most recent Israeli election, an accident happened at the facility. An explosion large enough to be felt 5km away seems to have occurred at the facility, severely da

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      All you have to do to get out is simply dial one of the off planet bases on the stargate and then have a team power down that gate then dial back home to the russian gate.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Actually the explosion was at Fordow, not Natanz, nobody claimed otherwise, although Iran claimed there was no explosion and the reports were "Western Propaganda". And 20% is not weapons grade, you need to get up to about 90% to be considered weapons-grade.

      • by downhole (831621)

        As I understand it, 20% is the absolute minimum concentration where it is possible to create a critical mass, and thus a nuclear detonation. I'm guessing that getting an actual detonation at that concentration level requires a ton of advanced warhead design/engineering and boosting techniques, and is still probably pretty low-yield. Probably nobody would actually bother doing it because it's much easier and more reliable to just keep on refining until you get to 90%+ where you can skip a lot of the tricky s

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Surely it is more than just one file

  • "Method and Apparatus for Bringing Down an Industrial Plant thought the Internet"

What the scientists have in their briefcases is terrifying. -- Nikita Khruschev

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