Researchers: Botnets Getting Beefier
Botnets are moving to more resilient architectures and more sophisticated encryption that will make them even harder to track and fight, researchers say at HotBots, a Usenix event.Think botnets are bad now? We aint seen nothin yet. A select group of some 40 security researchers gathered on April 10 in the first Usenix event devoted to these networks of infected machines. The invitation-only event, called HotBots, was held in Cambridge, Mass. At the event, researchers warned that botnetswhich can contain tens or even hundreds of thousands of zombie PCs that have been taken over for use in spamming and thievery of financial and identity-related dataare on the brink of a technological leap to more resilient architectures and more sophisticated encryption that will make it that much harder to track, monitor and disable them.
Specifically, security researchers have spotted the early development stages of resilient botnets that have included peer-to-peer architectures. Botnets have traditionally been organized in a hierarchical structure, with one central command-and-control location. This centralization has been a blessing to researchers, as it gives them a single point of failure on which to focus.