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Experts try to track vicious 'Slammer' worm

Computer experts are trying to determine if a virus-like attack on the Internet over the weekend originated in Hong Kong as the president of South Korea, the hardest hit nation, ordered officials to safeguard that nation's computer networks.

A U.S. Internet executive said by telephone that disruptions appeared first in Hong Kong before spreading to other Pacific Rim nations and then onto the United States and Europe.

The government-funded Hong Kong Computer Emergency Response Team was investigating but said it would be hard to determine the origin of the Internet attack, which shut down millions of computer users in South Korea and slowed or halted networks elsewhere. "Checking the origin of the worm is like finding which part of a river a drop of water comes from," said S.C. Leung, senior consultant with the Hong Kong computer team.

The cyber terror response team at South Korea's National Police Agency launched an investigation, but team leader Yang Keun-won said it was unclear whether officials could locate the origin of the worm.

Even as some experts sought the origin of the worm, others expressed worries that too many system managers only fix problems as they occur, rather than install a strong defense ahead of time to prevent repeats.

News source: CNN

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