You know to avoid sketchy sites, and always double-check your URLs. You like to think that going to a legitimate business website is going to be pretty safe, malware-wise. But alas, even the most legitimate site is vulnerable to security flaws… and a whole wave of them have recently been hijacked to try to extort money from you.
After the Feds and Microsoft in March chopped off the head of the hydra that was the 1-million strong “Rustock” botnet responsible for sending billions of spam, several heads have sprung in its place. PC World notes a Symantec report of a 24% jump in emails containing malicious links and attachments, possibly representing an attempt to regrow the forces of zombie controlled computers and fill the void left by Rustock.
Your inbox might feel a little empty for a while because Microsoft and the Feds have taken down the world’s largest botnet, “Rustock,” estimated to have infected over 1 million computers worldwide.
It’s a new day, so there must be a new revelation about another way in which Google Buzz is an affront to the concept of personal privacy, right? But the latest complaint about the Internet giant’s unasked-for answer to Facebook and Twitter goes far beyond making your private contacts public or adding potential personal safety risks to your “followers” list. It looks like the phishers and botnet scammers have already begun taking advantage of the new feature.
Where does spam come from? Well, there are these things called botnets. They’re networks of hijacked computers that secretly do the bidding of their masters. Often, they send out spam. Comcast plans to offer an automated service that will inform you, within your browser, if your computer is behaving as if it has been compromised by malware.
The FBI has tells us that they’ve found 1 million US computers that have been compromised and are being controlled and used for evil.
Red Tape Chronicles has an interesting series of articles about botnets, groups of hijacked computers that can be controlled remotely to send spam, viruses, conduct break-ins, host phishing sites, and of course, commandeer more computers. If you don’t take adequate steps to protect your computer, it could become some criminal’s slave.