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Twelve Million Zombie Computers Since January
Digital Trend ^ | Christopher Nickson | May 07, 2009

Posted on 05/07/2009 11:59:29 AM PDT by nickcarraway

Twelve million computers have been brought into botnets since January, according to a new report — and 18% of all zombie machines are in the US.

A new report from security company McAfee says that since January an estimated 12 million computers have been infected with malware and turned into zombies, making them part of botnets, and that these zombie numbers have increased by 50% since last year.

At 18%, the US hosts the largest number of infected machines, followed by China with 13%.

Jeff Green, senior vice-president of McAfee, said:

“The massive expansion of these botnets provides cyber-criminals with the infrastructure they need to flood the web with malware."

"Essentially, this is cyber-crime enablement."

Meanwhile, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu (DTT) is saying in a new paper that the cyberthreats grow ever stronger, and urgent action is needed.

Greg Pellegrino, who is a global public sector industry leader at DTT, told the BBC:

"This issue is moving so quickly, and with so much at stake economically and in terms of safety and security for people, we don't have 100 years to figure this out."

"We are seeing this change from protecting the internet to a conversation about how we succeed and prosper in cyberspace."

"Security spending is growing at a rate never seen before while the threat environment is growing at a pace of 40% a year.”

"In terms of volume and severity of incidents, the math doesn't work and we have to come up with a different approach that requires public and private sectors working together."

All this comes as President Obama is preparing to release a review into cybersecurity, which his administration has made a priority.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Computers/Internet; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: computer; spam; zombie
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1 posted on 05/07/2009 11:59:29 AM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: rdb3; Calvinist_Dark_Lord; GodGunsandGuts; CyberCowboy777; Salo; Bobsat; JosephW; ...

2 posted on 05/07/2009 12:00:06 PM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: VR-21

Bookmarked


3 posted on 05/07/2009 12:02:16 PM PDT by VR-21 (The election of Barack Obama was a hate crime.)
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To: nickcarraway

I am pretty stupid about this stuff. Would you know if your computer was a zombie?


4 posted on 05/07/2009 12:04:46 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: nickcarraway

I have a recurring issue on one XP Home laptop. A rootkit is repeatedly infecting atrac.dll; Norton doesn’t seem to even detect it. I got an antivirus from PCTools, and that disables it, but fails to delete or quarantine it. Another computer on the home network is on Symantec and is fine.

Anyone experienced anything similar?


5 posted on 05/07/2009 12:05:13 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: nickcarraway
OMG! We need a zombie plan!!!!
6 posted on 05/07/2009 12:05:41 PM PDT by null and void (We are now in day 108 of our national holiday from reality.)
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To: brytlea
Would you know if your computer was a zombie?

Yes. It start moaning for "brainzzzzz"

7 posted on 05/07/2009 12:06:01 PM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: brytlea
Would you know if your computer was a zombie?

It would go "coin Coin COIN!"...just kidding, bit of Scooby Doo humor never hurts.

Run a malware scan on it. Like from malwarebytes.org or trendmicro.com.

If your computer is grinding, especially when you are on the internet. If you receive tons of spam or popups, then you can be reasonably sure you are infected with malware. Just because you pay annually for a product like McAfee doesn't mean you're safe. I recommend a routine scan with a free tool like the ones I mentioned above to stay as clean and secure as possible.
8 posted on 05/07/2009 12:07:52 PM PDT by mmichaels1970
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To: nickcarraway

With the internet now hooked into everything... trusted to run it all.. it is only time before it became self- aware...

So I suggest life in prison or even capital punishment for hackers who release viruses.

BUT!!! these are the same people who FIND these leaks in the system, so I also suggest a substantial cah reward for anyoine who can find BUT NOT RELEASE a virus loophole.

I worked and went to school with many of these assholes.

The 30 year old living in his parents basement IS correct but there is a mangerial level who control them for these beusinss ventures.


9 posted on 05/07/2009 12:07:59 PM PDT by Mr. K (physically unable to proofreed (<---oops))
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To: brytlea

Did it vote for Obama?


10 posted on 05/07/2009 12:08:43 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (If Liberals are so upset over torture, why did they mock John McCains stiff arms during the campaign)
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To: ShadowAce
Freak’n zombie computers!!! Bring it on bitches!!!

PS Regular zombies die when you cut off their head and blow out their brains, how the hell do you kill a zombie computer?

11 posted on 05/07/2009 12:09:07 PM PDT by A Texan (Oderint dum metuant)
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To: brytlea

Keep your antivirus current and run a free malware check from time to time and you’ll be fine. Watch for unusual disk or network activity - lights on your router (if you have one) when you’re not expecting them. Maybe it’s Microsoft or RedHat updates; maybe it’s some clown using your box to mail porn or do a denial-of-service attack. You’ll get lots of suggestions on this thread, I haven’t a doubt.


12 posted on 05/07/2009 12:09:11 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: mmichaels1970

Thank you for the actual helpful post!


13 posted on 05/07/2009 12:09:43 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: Mr. K

Perhaps it’s the malware and virii that is preventing the Net from becoming self-aware.


14 posted on 05/07/2009 12:09:48 PM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: Mr. K

There are also countries behind such attacks. And I suspect people on competing platforms (Linux, Mac) who do such things in a “foreign” environment (MS) so as not to pee in their own swimming pool.


15 posted on 05/07/2009 12:10:18 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (If Liberals are so upset over torture, why did they mock John McCains stiff arms during the campaign)
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To: nickcarraway

This wasn’t what I had in mind when I think about fighting “zombies” with my AR.


16 posted on 05/07/2009 12:10:23 PM PDT by Mr Fuji
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To: a fool in paradise

No....


17 posted on 05/07/2009 12:10:25 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: annalex

I had a nasty memory-resident infection of something similar on my computer once.

Remove your current AV, and install Avast and that Malwarebytes software. Both are free for home use.

Run a scan and see if this helps.


18 posted on 05/07/2009 12:10:42 PM PDT by MyTwoCopperCoins (I don't have a license to kill; I have a learner's permit.)
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To: Mr. K
it is only time before it became self- aware... So I suggest life in prison or even capital punishment for hackers who release viruses.

Since it's self-aware, should we imprison the internet as well? ;)
19 posted on 05/07/2009 12:11:45 PM PDT by mmichaels1970
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To: Billthedrill

Thanks. I did have a trojan the other day (I think that’s the correct term). Luckily I called my son and he walked me thru a cure. It’s only the second thing I’ve ever had in all my years online, but I suspect it was just a matter of time.


20 posted on 05/07/2009 12:12:33 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: ShadowAce
If your screen saver looks like this.

It might just be a zombie.

21 posted on 05/07/2009 12:13:03 PM PDT by McGruff (Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency - Barack Obama)
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To: nickcarraway

I always wondered - I’ve had this nagging feeling for years that cyber security software companies secretly fund some hackers and virus creators in order to increase business and broaden revenue streams. It’s just a feeling.


22 posted on 05/07/2009 12:14:19 PM PDT by OB1kNOb (I'm all for cap & trade. I want to cap government's power and trade it for a conservative one.)
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To: Billthedrill
Maybe it’s Microsoft or RedHat updates

Part of the problem is that too much software declares a "right" to go out to the web and report back home or check for updates, etc.

And too much non-threating but nosey java as well.

The fact that people are permitted to put crud on your system, and give it 40 year expiration dates, etc. without your consent is why we are where we are today.

Imagine if ever time you pulled in to get gas, there were people popping your hood to make modifications, putting flyers under your windshield wipers, putting boxes of personal information in your trunk and glove compartment...

23 posted on 05/07/2009 12:14:44 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (If Liberals are so upset over torture, why did they mock John McCains stiff arms during the campaign)
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To: mmichaels1970; brytlea
Are you sure that's all it takes? I've never gotten a good answer as to how to detect if you are zombified.

I was worried that one of my computers was owned, because occasionally I get an error message saying something like there are two IP addresses on my computer. But I routinely do the spyware checks.

24 posted on 05/07/2009 12:15:43 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: OB1kNOb

When Microsoft bought Gator, they intially just reclassified it no longer to be considered “malware” in their own adware sensor.


25 posted on 05/07/2009 12:15:43 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (If Liberals are so upset over torture, why did they mock John McCains stiff arms during the campaign)
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To: ShadowAce
Perhaps it’s the malware and virii that is preventing the Net from becoming self-aware.

Now there's a comforting thought. Maybe it is self-aware, but not in a healthy way. MAYBE THE ENTIRE INTERNET IS A ZOMBIE!

It'll be in my nightmares tonight. I hope you're happy.

26 posted on 05/07/2009 12:15:49 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: nickcarraway

I get frustrated because there are times that I will see activity that lets me know that I am most certainly infected with adware or possibly a virus. And none of the scanners will find it (McAffew antivirus or different adware search programs).

Occasionally I’ll find a program (adware search) that will find it but be unable to remove it.

In those instances, I find no option except to do a clean install (and I use a new drive).


27 posted on 05/07/2009 12:18:28 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (If Liberals are so upset over torture, why did they mock John McCains stiff arms during the campaign)
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To: Billthedrill

The internet is turning people INTO Zombies. Just like late night tv turned people into vidiots.


28 posted on 05/07/2009 12:19:04 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (If Liberals are so upset over torture, why did they mock John McCains stiff arms during the campaign)
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To: a fool in paradise
And I suspect people on competing platforms (Linux, Mac) who do such things in a “foreign” environment (MS) so as not to pee in their own swimming pool.

Photobucket

29 posted on 05/07/2009 12:19:28 PM PDT by Stentor (The Criminal Obama Administration.)
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To: ShadowAce
Go to this link and you will be able to download and install all the security programs you need to scan and remove your problems if you have them.
And before the Applebores jump on here with the “Just buy a Mac crap”, remember these things do not jump out of thin air and infect your computer. You are letting them get on your computer with your computing habits. These include opening spam e-mails (even those from friends), going to websites that are flagged by your anti virus program as being dangerous, and the biggest one I still see is file sharing through Limewire, If you have this program uninstall it and use Torrents, but scan all downloaded files before running.
Never ever run two anti-virus programs on your computer. If you are running McAfee or Symantec, you are better off with Avira AntiVir Personal Edition (free) or AVG Free version.

http://www.techsupportalert.com/

30 posted on 05/07/2009 12:20:26 PM PDT by Wooly
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To: nickcarraway

Awhile back I had weird messages, my son put in a password or something for the router and now I don’t have that. He said someone was likely tapping into my router to get online (free).


31 posted on 05/07/2009 12:21:21 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: annalex
I know rootkits can be pretty nasty to remove. I've never seen this particular one, but I googled it (as I would if you were to bring your computer to me).

I found a thread on forums.techguy.org that has a ridiculously long discussion and troubleshooting session on it.

The most promising part of the thread seems to be a link to a program called gmer.net. It appears that a better known scanner called Avast contains the same anti-rootkit technology.

I'd try to remove it with the free version of Avast.
If that doesn't work, I'd try malwarebytes.
Then, I'd look into this gmer.net rootkit removal tool.
32 posted on 05/07/2009 12:24:52 PM PDT by mmichaels1970
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To: brytlea

Also on the website I put in the post also has some really good stuff under the “Hot Finds” tab. Also the programs on the website are tested by the members before they are posted.


33 posted on 05/07/2009 12:28:21 PM PDT by Wooly
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To: Wooly

How about Avast?


34 posted on 05/07/2009 12:32:11 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

I mean this with 100% honesty. I support the Death Penalty for anyone who writes and releases a Virus or Malware. They do hundreds of millions in damage.

Argue all you want, but i’d pull the trigger today. Id also expand the death penalty to include anyone who forces a purse away from an elderly woman. They’ll never be worth a damn either.


35 posted on 05/07/2009 12:32:42 PM PDT by DesertRhino (Dogs earn the title of "man's best friend", Muslims hate dogs,,add that up.)
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To: nickcarraway
Are you sure that's all it takes?

Never. It's my best guess. The dudes who write these things are pretty clever. They're freaking jerks, but clever. All I can say as that a good malware detection/removal strategy, and smart/safe browsing are the most reasonable way to prevent and remove malicious software. The only fullproof way I know of to stay completely secure is to disconnect your internet.

I was worried that one of my computers was owned, because occasionally I get an error message saying something like there are two IP addresses on my computer.

I'd need to see the error verbatim. Do you have an unsecured wireless network at home that a neighbor might be connecting to? Does your computer have more than one network card? Are there more computers in your house that might be using static IP addresses? There could be a variety of answers to that.
36 posted on 05/07/2009 12:34:16 PM PDT by mmichaels1970
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To: Mr. K

You got it, and furthermore, im halfway suspicious of the companies who sell the “cure” software. They sure benefit when a malware or virus goes around. I think they are the releasers sometimes.


37 posted on 05/07/2009 12:34:58 PM PDT by DesertRhino (Dogs earn the title of "man's best friend", Muslims hate dogs,,add that up.)
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To: nickcarraway

“A new report from security company McAfee..”

Yup. No self interest there..

I’m certain the makers of Tamiflu would like to talk to you about swine flu too...


38 posted on 05/07/2009 12:36:01 PM PDT by Pessimist
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To: Mr Fuji
You probably need this AR to fight Zombies. You have to blow off their heads or sever their spines to be effective.

http://www.gunblast.com/50Beowulf.htm

39 posted on 05/07/2009 12:53:01 PM PDT by wolfcreek ("unnamed "right-wing extremist")
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To: DesertRhino

All your byte are belong to us.


40 posted on 05/07/2009 12:55:15 PM PDT by Semper Vigilantis (Don't blame me - I voted for THE AMERICAN guy)
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To: DesertRhino

I am with you- I once inserted a floppy disk that I had not used for about 5 or 10 years- I wanted to see what was on it before I threw it away- and my anti-virus popped up saying it was infected with some NEW virus and needed their lates software for which i had to renew my subscription...

I downloaded a free copy of Avast...and never got that message and never used that software again


41 posted on 05/07/2009 1:07:04 PM PDT by Mr. K (physically unable to proofreed (<---oops))
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To: OB1kNOb

“I always wondered - I’ve had this nagging feeling for years that cyber security software companies secretly fund some hackers and virus creators in order to increase business and broaden revenue streams. It’s just a feeling.”

They don’t need to. There are plenty of hackers around who get their ego-gratification by doing this kind of stuff. If you ever get into a talk on a message board with one, they’ll brag to high-heaven about what a great thing they have accomplished. Writing something that infects/damages other people’s comuters.

They really don’t get it.

My response is it takes a lot of skill and ability to build a house. It only takes some gas and a match to destroy it (which just about any idiot can master.)

The truth is most malware/virus programs are not that complicated. You find a security hole and you expolit it.

Building a full system or program is much more complicated. Truth is it is beyond the ability of most malware/virus writers. That’s why they are writing virus’ instead of creating systems.


42 posted on 05/07/2009 1:50:28 PM PDT by Brookhaven
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To: annalex
Cleaning tools may work, or they may not. Particularly pernicious malware can be programmed to look for and work around said tools. Installing and scanning with various tools can take up a lot of time, and then there's always that nagging doubt as to whether or not it really got it. So as a plan D:

Backup data ONLY. No applications.

Then

Repartition, reformat, reinstall.

"I say we take off and nuke the site from orbit - it's the only way to be sure" - Ripley

43 posted on 05/07/2009 2:01:26 PM PDT by AFreeBird
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To: brytlea
... my son put in a password or something for the router and now I don’t have that. He said someone was likely tapping into my router to get online (free).

Then you need to get your son back out there, let him show you what he did, and write down the Username and Password. If your router is locked down, you should be relatively safe as long as you don't surf the "dangerous sites", and you have adequate virus scanning software.

44 posted on 05/07/2009 2:03:09 PM PDT by ken in texas (come fold with us - team #36120)
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To: ken in texas

Oh, I have it written down and taped in a safe place. How dumb do I look?! Wait...don’t answer that!


45 posted on 05/07/2009 2:05:58 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: ShadowAce

When a Dem gets in trouble the media conveniently forgets to mention the party affiliation in the report. The tech media usually forgets to add “Microsoft” to malware stories.


46 posted on 05/07/2009 2:38:30 PM PDT by Gomez (killer of threads)
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To: nickcarraway
Photobucket
47 posted on 05/07/2009 2:41:51 PM PDT by Pistolshot (The Soap-box, The Ballot-box, The Jury-box, And The Cartridge-Box ...we are past 2 of them.)
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To: AFreeBird

No painless way, eh?

Thnak you for the advice.


48 posted on 05/07/2009 2:48:35 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: MyTwoCopperCoins

Forgot about Avast. Is it still free for a trial period? Thnak you for the reminder, part of the problem is finding things that you can try before you buy.


49 posted on 05/07/2009 2:50:26 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: mmichaels1970

Thank you, sounds like a game plan. I’ll get busy this weekend.


50 posted on 05/07/2009 2:51:35 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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