A worm was recently discovered inside laptops aboard NASA's International Space Station. The detected virus was designed to steal passwords and send them to a remote server. Fortunately, none of the Space Station's critical workstations were affected by virus. Only laptops used for emails and nutritional experiments were mostly affected.
NASA initially withheld any information regarding the virus, but SpaceRef.com later revealed that the worm was W32.Gammima.AG - a worm that gathers personal data for online games.
Investigations are currently underway regarding how the virus was able to sneak into the International Space Station. More than one laptop was affected, suggesting that it spread via the local intranet or via a thumb drive.
While it is possible for astronauts to access email via a KU band data link, also used for data and video transfer, the Space Station has no direct connection to the Internet. Regardless of any outside connection, everything is scanned before it goes up.
NASA spokesman Kelly Humphries was asked whether any mission critical systems were connected to any of the infected laptops. He simply replied, "I don't know and even if I did, I wouldn't be able to tell you for IT security reasons".
- New image of Endeavour mission's installation of ISS module
- Eye in the sky: Columbus camera beams back first images of Earth