Microsoft has announced that a recent security update released for its Windows XP OS has failed to install on systems affected by a new rootkit virus which rejects the updates.
A rootkit virus is a malware which, when downloaded on a PC, hides deep inside the system which makes it difficult to be detected.
In this case, the rootkit, which has come to be known as the Alureon rootkit, is preventing infected system from installing updates due to a security feature installed by Microsoft, which halts the update if the virus is detected in the system.
This mechanism has been implemented by the company following the series of crashes after a similar February update.
In a statement released by the software giant, the company explained that “These abnormal conditions on a system could be the result of an infection with a computer virus that modifies some operating system files, which renders the infected computer incompatible with the kernel update.”
The company cautioned that the Alureon virus randomly follows the net traffic on an infected system and captures usernames, passwords and credit card details from the ailing PC system.
Microsoft refused to specify the number of people infected with the virus, which were not able to install the updates.