That headline got your attention, didn't it?
Fortunately - or unfortunately, depending on your opinion of the viability of malware-as-military-ordnance - we're not talking about worm as in virus here.
That's right: a gaggle of researchers from MIT, Harvard and Seoul National University have made international headlines with a technical paper about an earthworm-style robot, apparently bankrolled by DARPA, and published in the IEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics.
You're not likely to read the catchily-titled Meshworm: A Peristaltic Soft Robot With Antagonistic Nickel Titanium Coil Actuators - with the paper costing $31 a look, you'd have to be pretty keen on cybernetic peristalsis - but we can at least show you an image here on Naked Security, thanks to MIT's publicity department.
(If still images don't do it for you, MIT has a video of the worm in action. But don't get too excited: the worm peaks at speeds of 0.005 metres per second. Usain Bolt, for what it's worth, is more than 2000 times quicker - though, to be fair, he doesn't have to wriggle along on his belly.)
So far, the worm is powered and controlled externally, so it's not capable of autonomous operation - so no chance yet of hackers hijacking it "in the wild", as it were.
Nevertheless, there's some fun technology in there.
I can't see the manufacturers of wheeled and tracked military vehicles quaking in their commercial boots just yet. But maybe - just maybe - this invention heralds the creation of a robot vacuum cleaner which can get under the couch and doesn't get stymied every time it comes across a corner.Follow @duckblog