Worries of Storm forming massive botnet

Posted by   Virus Bulletin on   Aug 9, 2007

DDoS danger looms as infection levels boom.

Repeated waves of the 'Storm' trojan attacks continue to be spammed out, with the latest using more eCards to hook in still more victims. As numbers of infected systems continue to grow, the threat of such a large network of zombies being used for a major DDoS attack has been highlighted by security watchers.

The Storm attacks began late last year, and various generations have flooded mailboxes almost continuously ever since, with frequent spikes as a new attack methods have carried new and improved versions of the malware, which uses server-side polymorphism and other techniques to minimise detection by security software.

Growing sophistication in the chains of downloaders and trojans used, and in the social engineering in the mailing campaigns seeding the attacks, has led to perhaps as many as 2 million systems being compromised and added to the botnet controlled by the creators of the attack.

Small and seemingly random DDoS attacks have already been sighted, which some have suggested may be test runs for a potentially devastating attack on any website or network. Whether the motivation behind the ongoing campaign is political, as seen in recent troubles between Estonia and Russia, or simply financial, remains unclear.

A detailed piece in InformationWeek is here, with more commentary from a McAfee blogger here.

Posted on 09 August 2007 by Virus Bulletin

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