Thoughts, information and reflections about technology

GREAT NEWS- Botnet operators arrested…!!!!

Well, this is great news.. The FBI has arrested ‘several’ ‘botherders. These are the people who use malicious software to gain control of home, business and institutional computers. Their task is made easier by the millions of small businesses and home users who do not keep their computers adequately secured.

Once a botherder has a number of computers under their control, they now have a ‘botnet’. A botnet can be used to attack other computers and computer systems or to send out spam. The botnets are usually rented to individuals or groups. Say, for example, you are a member of the yellow team and you don’t like the blue team. You could hire a botnet to attack the blue team’s website and cause it to crash.

One of the questions I had when first hearing this is “what will happen to the compromised computers that made up the botnets?” The story mentions that CERT will start trying to identify and notify those people. The problem is that the compromised machines are still vulnerable to attack because the holes that were used originally to control them are still there. Worse yet, most hacksers/botherders will put their own rootkits on those machines to enable an easy ‘back door’ to the machine.

The FBI is working with computer industry partners, including the Carnegie
Mellon University’s Computer Emergency Response Team, to notify botnet victims,
but officials stress that they will not be able to contact everyone whose
computer was affected.

I sincerely hope that the FBI combs the records of these creeps and finds out who rented the botnets. They really need to go after them as well.

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