Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Risk

11/20/2008
11:38 PM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme
Commentary
50%
50%

Hundreds Of Thousands Of Bots Lay Dormant

According to a story that ran in our sister site, DarkReading.com, 500,000 bots from a recently severed botnet army may now lay dormant, awaiting their next set of orders.

According to a story that ran in our sister site, DarkReading.com, 500,000 bots from a recently severed botnet army may now lay dormant, awaiting their next set of orders.This news follows last week's sudden fall of the McColo hosting service, credited to Brian Krebs, security reporter for The Washington Post, who said at the time that the McColo hosting service could have been responsible for 75% of the spam circulating the Internet.

Now that the master network has been crushed, DarkReading's Kelly Jackson Higgins asks: what's now going on with all of those dislocated bots that had previously been used to generate all of that spam:

Researchers have spotted these errant bots over the past week attempting to phone home to their former command and control (C&C) servers. While the industry continues to celebrate a nearly 70% nosedive (albeit temporary) in spam volume without McColo to host the world's biggest spamming botnets anymore, these orphaned bots are still at risk -- and possibly still spewing spam, security experts say.

"They are probably already infected with multiple things. You hardly ever find just one bot on these computers," says Joe Stewart, director of malware research for SecureWorks. "You may find three or four different spam bots on the same machine. And who knows what else -- password stealers and other rogue ware."

Stewart is no doubt correct. The systems acting as a home to these bots are most likely infected with numerous types of malware. If history is any indication, either the previous owner of the bot network will regain control, or others will start trying to highjack as many of those bots as they can for their own networks.

It should be interesting to see how this shakes out in the coming weeks.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Why Cyber-Risk Is a C-Suite Issue
Marc Wilczek, Digital Strategist & CIO Advisor,  11/12/2019
Unreasonable Security Best Practices vs. Good Risk Management
Jack Freund, Director, Risk Science at RiskLens,  11/13/2019
Breaches Are Inevitable, So Embrace the Chaos
Ariel Zeitlin, Chief Technology Officer & Co-Founder, Guardicore,  11/13/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Navigating the Deluge of Security Data
In this Tech Digest, Dark Reading shares the experiences of some top security practitioners as they navigate volumes of security data. We examine some examples of how enterprises can cull this data to find the clues they need.
Flash Poll
Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
Frustrated with recurring intrusions and breaches, cybersecurity professionals are questioning some of the industrys conventional wisdom. Heres a look at what theyre thinking about.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-19010
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-16
Eval injection in the Math plugin of Limnoria (before 2019.11.09) and Supybot (through 2018-05-09) allows remote unprivileged attackers to disclose information or possibly have unspecified other impact via the calc and icalc IRC commands.
CVE-2019-16761
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-15
A specially crafted Bitcoin script can cause a discrepancy between the specified SLP consensus rules and the validation result of the [email protected] npm package. An attacker could create a specially crafted Bitcoin script in order to cause a hard-fork from the SLP consensus. All versions >1.0...
CVE-2019-16762
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-15
A specially crafted Bitcoin script can cause a discrepancy between the specified SLP consensus rules and the validation result of the slpjs npm package. An attacker could create a specially crafted Bitcoin script in order to cause a hard-fork from the SLP consensus. Affected users can upgrade to any...
CVE-2019-13581
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-15
An issue was discovered in Marvell 88W8688 Wi-Fi firmware before version p52, as used on Tesla Model S/X vehicles manufactured before March 2018, via the Parrot Faurecia Automotive FC6050W module. A heap-based buffer overflow allows remote attackers to cause a denial of service or execute arbitrary ...
CVE-2019-13582
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-15
An issue was discovered in Marvell 88W8688 Wi-Fi firmware before version p52, as used on Tesla Model S/X vehicles manufactured before March 2018, via the Parrot Faurecia Automotive FC6050W module. A stack overflow could lead to denial of service or arbitrary code execution.