FBI Hijacks Botnet, Drives it Off the Cliff

Written By My Infomation on 4/29/11 | 4/29/2011

But now the virtual rampage is over. Servers controlling the Coreflood have been seized, domain names – intercepted, and last week FBI secured a warrant that allowed them to impersonate the botnet control center and send a remote kill-switch to the infected machines. This reverse-engineered vaccine disabled the Coreflood, and left it at mercy of the system security updates and anti-virus software.

Coreflood. A small piece of malware that has been active for over a decade and managed to turn 2 million machines worldwide into a network of sleeper agents - a so called botnet. Infected computers could record user’s keystrokes, send out spam and malware, perform coordinated website attacks, and do many other things that users were never aware of. Originally sent from Russia (presumably with love), Coreflood evolved over the years, with more than 100 updates. It is speculated that it’s responsible for losses exceeding $100 million dollars.
It was a precedent-setting move, and one that immediately brought some controversy. Not everyone liked the idea of a government agency remotely running a piece of code on his personal computer.
Chris Palmer, technology director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation and former Google employee, said: “Even if we could absolutely be sure that all of the infected Coreflood botnet machines were running the exact code that we reverse-engineered and convinced ourselves that we understood, this would still be an extremely sketchy action to take. It’s other people’s computers and you don’t know what’s going to happen for sure. You might blow up some important machine.”
Of course, it’s not only that. If the Temporary Restrain Order is enough to tamper with your PC, other remote “cures” might be rolled out in order to fight piracy, or content deemed to be illegal. Slippery slope scares are old and worn, but so is the government’s tendency to seize new powers any time it spots an opportunity.
via [technorati]

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nova 13 said...

nice info.. ^_^
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