Run into more customer service bots lately? Let Marketplace Tech know. More info

Flame self-destructs

John Moe Jun 11, 2012

You know those spy movies where the spy is given a cyanide capsule hidden in his tooth so that if he’s captured, he can bite down on it and die rather than spill his secrets? Okay, first of all, I always wonder how he didn’t accidentally bite down while eating, like, a bagel. But anyway, that’s what happened to the Flame worm. Not the bagel part, the self-destruct part. What’s kind of interesting, though, is that while Flame apparently had a suicide feature built in that could have been activated, it instead self-destructed by downloading a poison pill from its command and control computers (the ones that tell the infected computers what to do). That could have increased the risk of detection and led people to the point of origin for Flame.

We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.

Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.

In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.

Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.