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December - 2008 - issue > Tech Tracker
Resuscitated Botnet to Spur Spam Growth
Eureka Bharali
Monday, December 1, 2008
While spams were supposedly declining with the shutdown of Web-hosting firm McColo, the cyberpunks have brewed life to the Srizbi Botnet, the botnet consisting of computers infected by the Srizbi trojan, which begets half of all spams produced.

Outsmarting the Internet security firms, the Srizbi authors had the backup of a mathematical algorithm to evade shutdown, as it happened in the case of its partner McColo who was responsible for hosting machines that were responsible for the flow of 75 percent of the world's spam. So, at a time when Microsoft declared its triumph over Storm botnet, the Internet criminals have proved their technical prowess again. In fact, through its 50 variants impacting 500,000 systems, the spam king has unmistakably raised the risk of spams jamming every site, which is the basic way to garner more cash.

Moreover, the futility of preventing cyber criminals through the control of different domains, which proved expensive, makes it possible for the tainted botnet to send 60 billion messages per day. Bradley Anstis, Vice President at Marshal, an Internet security solution provider, said, "At its peak, the highly publicized Storm botnet only accounted for 20 percent of spam. Srizbi now produces more spam than all the other botnets combined."

However, there are analysts claiming a significant downturn in the rate of spams with a halt in the active participation of Mega-D and Rustock botnets, with the latter contributing as much as 25,000 spam messages an hour.
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