/ August 27, 2008

Space Jam: Computer Virus Hits NASA

This week, NASA astronauts discovered that laptops transported in July to the International Space Station are infected with a worm virus. While none of the space station’s systems are at risk of being compromised, the virus, known as Gammima.AG, is capable of stealing log ins and passwords from infected machines. NASA has launched an investigation into how the virus got onto the laptops and into space, but has noted that this is not the first instance when an infected computer made it to the station.

The infected laptops are non-essential equipment for the astronauts, used primarily to help them monitor their nutrition and send emails home to friends and family. Because the ISS does not maintain a direct internet connection, and all files set to and from earth are thoroughly scanned, NASA suspects that the viruses were transmitted from the personal USB drives of the astronauts.

While NASA descibes the virus infection as a nuisance, the organization vows to implement stricter security controls in the future.
Source: BBC News

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