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The largest botnet is for rent

The largest botnet is for rent

Tsar Putin’s telematic far west generates yet another prodigy in the field of crime applied to new technologies. It was not enough to have left the hands free to the Russian Business Network cartel, the cyber-crime made in Russia seems to have the most important hypermarket of infected PCs , in which the attacker on duty enters, decides the number of systems to use for his attack and pays a few cents to the PC. All certified by the relative invoice with the log of the activities of the PCs managed illegally remotely.

The rent of zombified PC botnets is not a new frontier, but it is certainly the fact that crackers and virus writers no longer seem to fear the consequences of certain actions and therefore carry them out in the open, or almost. All this emerges from a study by some security experts, who remained anonymous “for – they explain – not to jeopardize the intelligence work conducted online”. During their investigations, the investigators came across loads.cc, a seemingly innocuous and “clean” website, most likely hosted in Russian territory, without viruses or malware, but which on closer inspection turns out to be a real personalized infection control center .

Uncovered during forensic analyzes conducted on some servers filled with malware, the site is described by researchers as yet another example of cracking as a form of service able to support the currently existing “products” and an ideal viaticum for introducing technologically less capable criminals into the profitable world of cyber-crime.

Behind loads.cc operates a huge botnet, made up of several million infected PCs at the total mercy of the criminals who control them. These criminals are able to provide in real time the status of the network, the number of zombie PCs in it and their location. Information that is promptly forwarded to the interested parties: the non-tech criminal pays $ 20 cents per bot or for each successfully infected system chooses the extent of the subnet to have at its disposal and finally the type of customized attack it intends to spread on the network.

It is possible to pay a certain amount in advance for a fixed number of bots, the researchers say, as well as choosing a particular range of IP addresses, the attacked country or other characteristics. All data that will be regularly communicated to the customer, by way of a telephone bill with attached a detailed list of all registered connections and network activities.

The goal depends on the wishes of the criminal-client and can range from sending spam of blue pills and ***** enlargements, to installing a trojan-keylogger with which to steal sensitive data and confidential financial information on infected systems, to the spread of new types of malware.

According to experts, the business model promoted by loads.cc creates a number of concerns. First, the botnet is available to everyone and at a “popular” cost, paving the way for mass cybercrime and multiple infection of dozens of malware on the same zombie PC. Secondly, it is easy to use the service as a sort of virtual battlefield between malware writers, who have one more tool at their disposal to wage war, do business and cause considerable economic and moral damage to users.

The hyper-botnet of loads.cc then makes the alarm launched this January by the “godfather” of the Internet and the TCP / IP protocol Vinton Cerf even more disturbing: the technologist had estimated that 25% of all connected PCs were part of a botnet, eventually warning on the risk of collapse of the entire global network infrastructure . Risk already touched upon with the attack on the root servers of DNS systems, and which cases such as that of

Alfonso Maruccia