Why can't hackers be stopped?

Thursday, 31 October 2002, 1:35 PM EST

The battle between malicious hackers and system administrators is a never-ending tug-of-war between constantly evolving adversaries. Every time administrators seem to have gained the upper hand, their nemeses change in surprisingly agile ways.

For example, as computer users and network administrators learn to take virus protection more seriously, hackers are beginning to exploit a new avenue of attack: active components. These are modules of code, such as ActiveX controls or Java Latest News about Java applets, that are passed between computers or applications. They are routinely, and legitimately, used in thousands of applications.

The potential for malicious active components, or malware, to be distributed over the Internet has been well known for years, but they have been overshadowed by flashier and faster-spreading worms and viruses.

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