The Stuxnet worm, a form of malware, was likely created by a government.

“In terms of preparation, planning and organization, Stuxnet is completely unparalleled to anything we’ve seen before,” Roel Schouwenberg, a Boston-based researcher for Russian internet security company Kaspersky Lab, told GlobalPost.

Schouwenberg said Stuxnet exploits holes in computers running Microsoft Windows, infecting networks and spreading via USB data sticks as it hunts specific software created by German engineering company Siemens for use in power plants and factories.

Once it finds the software, it makes modifications, causing machinery to shut down, “potentially by explosion.” In the meantime, it tinkers with feedback software so engineers running the plant have no idea what is happening.

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