Black Hawk Down writer Mark Bowden has penned a book which claims that the Conflicker worm could break the internet.
More than 12 million computers have been infected with the self-updating worm, which gets into the core of the of the computer. Bowden's latest book "Worm: The First Digital World War" talks about how Conficker was discovered, how it works, and the ongoing programming battle to bring down the Conficker worm.
He said that if the worm was used nefariously it could really damage the world and all who sail in her.
Speaking to Fresh Air, Bowden said that the Conflicker controllers could use all of the computers that are connected and they would have the largest, most powerful computer in the world.
He said that the Conficker botnet was powerful enough to take over computer networks that control banking, telephones, security systems, air traffic control and even the internet itself.
Bowden thinks that Conflicker is powerful enough not only to overwhelm the target of the attack, but the root servers of the internet itself, and could crash the whole bally thing. A botnet of that size could also be used as a weapon.
Conficker is also good for stealing passwords and codes. In the Ukraine a group of people were leasing a portion of the Conficker worm's computers to drain US bank accounts.
Mark Bowden is the author of several books, including Black Hawk Down, Killing Pablo: The Hunt for the World's Greatest Outlaw and Guests of the Ayatollah.
He said that it was fortunate that the the creator of Conficker so far had little interest in taking down the internet or using its bot to create a weapon of mass destruction. But that did not mean that it could not be used as such.