Cybercriminals frustrated with botnet trackers

Posted by   Virus Bulletin on   Mar 10, 2011

Drastic measures discussed by users of online forum.

Russian cybercriminals are willing to go to great lengths to frustrate services that hinder botnets created with the ZeuS and SpyEye exploit kits, according to security journalist Brian Krebs.

Krebs managed to gain access to an exclusive Russian language forum that caters to cybercriminals. The forum's users have been venting their frustration about the work of Roman Hüssy, a Swiss computer expert, who created the ZeusTracker and SpyEye Tracker websites which track the botnets' command and control (C&C) servers. The two tracking services provide blacklists that can be used by system administrators to block access to the C&C servers from their systems.

Unsurprisingly, Hüssy's work has proved unpopular with the botnet operators and his tracking sites have recently suffered from various DDoS attacks. But with no lasting or 'satisfactory' effect from these attacks, the users of the forum are becoming increasingly frustrated and have been discussing more drastic measures.

One forum member even suggested hiring a hitman, and another suggested poisoning Hüssy with the lethal organic mercury. However, most of the discussion concentrates on technical measures. One suggestion was to add the URLs of legitimate websites to the botnets' configuration files, thus hoping to trick the trackers into listing these on their blacklists, making them less useful. However, when told about this idea, Hüssy laughed and said his trackers would not list sites simply because they were mentioned in the config files.

More at Brian Krebs's blog here, which also contains screenshots with translations of the forum discussions. The ZeuS and SpyEye trackers can be found here and here, respectively.

Posted on 10 March 2011 by Virus Bulletin



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