Study: Unpatched PCs compromised in 20 minutes

    Date18 Aug 2004
    5830
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    Don't connect that new PC to the Internet before taking security precautions, researchers at the Internet Storm Center warned Tuesday. According to the researchers, an unpatched Windows PC connected to the Internet will last for only about 20 minutes before it's compromised by malware, on average. That figure is down from around 40 minutes, the group's estimate in 2003. . . . Don't connect that new PC to the Internet before taking security precautions, researchers at the Internet Storm Center warned Tuesday.

    According to the researchers, an unpatched Windows PC connected to the Internet will last for only about 20 minutes before it's compromised by malware, on average. That figure is down from around 40 minutes, the group's estimate in 2003.

    The Internet Storm Center, which is part of the SANS Institute, calculated the 20-minute "survival time" by listening on vacant Internet Protocol addresses and timing the frequency of reports received there.

    "If you are assuming that most of these reports are generated by worms that attempt to propagate, an unpatched system would be infected by such a probe," the center, which provides research and education on security issues, said in a statement.

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