Botnet taken down as ringleaders are arrested

Posted by   Virus Bulletin on   Mar 3, 2010

'Mariposa' included almost 13 million zombies.

Spanish authorities have managed to take down the Mariposa botnet - one of the largest of its kind which is believed to have infected in 12.7 million computers worldwide - as well as arresting three of its botherders.

Stories of botnets being taken down have become more prevalent recently; however, usually this is by means of taking the command and control centres down - which leaves the computers infected and the crooks behind the botnet free to regain control over their network of zombies. By arresting the botherders themselves, one would hope that Mariposa has been given a more serious blow.

While the botnet was used for a wide range of malicious activities, from identity theft to running DDoS attacks and sending spam, first reports suggest that global spam levels have dropped over the past fews days.

The Guardia Civil, the Spanish national police, has revealed that the three suspects are in their 20s or early 30s. According to a spokesman, they are neither brilliant programmers nor mafiosi who like fast cars and expensive clothes: "The most frightening thing is they are normal people who are earning a lot of money with cybercrime". More arrests are expected in other countries.

More at Associated Press here, or at Panda Security here. Panda, together with Canadian company Defence Intelligence assisted the police in their investigations.

Posted on 03 March 2010 by Virus Bulletin



Latest posts:

New paper: Does malware based on Spectre exist?

It is likely that, by now, everyone in computer science has at least heard of the Spectre attack, and many excellent explanations of the attack already exist. But what is the likelihood of finding Spectre being exploited on Android smartphones?

More VB2018 partners announced

We are excited to announce several more companies that have partnered with VB2018.

Malware authors' continued use of stolen certificates isn't all bad news

A new malware campaign that uses two stolen code-signing certificates shows that such certificates continue to be popular among malware authors. But there is a positive side to malware authors' use of stolen certificates.

Save the dates: VB2019 to take place 2-4 October 2019

Though the location will remain under wraps for a few more months, we are pleased to announce the dates for VB2019, the 29th Virus Bulletin International Conference.

Necurs update reminds us that the botnet cannot be ignored

The operators of the Necurs botnet, best known for being one of the most prolific spam botnets of the past few years, have pushed out updates to its client, which provide some important lessons about why malware infections matter.

We have placed cookies on your device in order to improve the functionality of this site, as outlined in our cookies policy. However, you may delete and block all cookies from this site and your use of the site will be unaffected. By continuing to browse this site, you are agreeing to Virus Bulletin's use of data as outlined in our privacy policy.