The Conficker scare has been on the forefront of Internet news and discussion boards for a couple of weeks now, but was it a real threat — one that actually did adversely affect a lot of users — or was it a bust?


Over the years that I’ve been providing user support, I’ve seen any number of warnings about some impending cyber-threat of some sort, but more often than not, the real harm it was predicted to cause paled in comparison to the hype leading up to it. Was this the case with the Conficker threat? In my case, I didn’t see any evidence of it at all. In fact, I can’t recall one instance of an over-hyped cyber-threat actually showing up on my cyber-doorstep. They’ve pretty much all fizzled, especially the ones of the April Fools variety.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think user support professionals should take cyber-threats lightly, because we shouldn’t. But I believe that if we simply employ good practices on an ongoing basis, we’ll thwart just about any threat that might present itself, regardless of how much it’s hyped in the cyber-news. Regularly scheduling Windows updates and keeping current with virus definition updates has become a no-brainer and something very few user support professionals overlook. Other than that, should we take extra precautions against what often-times becomes an over-hyped threat?

Was the latest Conficker threat simply the cyber-threat du jour? Did it rear its ugly head in your neck of the cyber world, or did you not see hide nor hair of it? Was the April Fool’s joke the actual harm caused by Conficker, or was the real joke merely the threat and hype of impending disaster that it would cause?

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