'Code Red' Computer Worm Goes Active

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WASHINGTON — The “Code Red” software infection began to take hold Wednesday, infecting at least 22,000 Web sites and spreading fears of an Internet-wide slowdown. But officials remained hopeful that enough computers were inoculated to avoid major interruptions.

The infection rate seems to be on par with the worm’s first outbreak last month, said Alan Paller, research director at the Sans Institute, a computer security think tank working with the government to monitor the Internet.

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