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Mirai Botnet Creators Helping FBI Fight Cybercrime to Stay Out of Jail

Mirai Botnet Creators Helping FBI Fight Cybercrime to Stay Out of Jail

September 19, 2018Mohit Kumar
Three young hackers who were sentenced late last year for creating and spreading the notorious Mirai botnet are now helping the FBI to investigate other "complex" cybercrime cases in return to avoid their lengthy prison terms. Paras Jha, 21 from New Jersey, Josiah White, 20 from Washington, and Dalton Norman, 21 from Louisiana, plead guilty in December 2017 to multiple charges for their role in creating and hijacking hundreds of thousands IoT devices to make them part of a notorious botnet network dubbed Mirai . Mirai malware scanned for insecure routers, cameras, DVRs, and other Internet of Things (IoT) devices which were using their default passwords and then made them part of a botnet network . The trio developed the Mirai botnet to attack rival Minecraft video gaming hosts, but after realizing that their invention was powerful enough to launch record-breaking DDoS attacks against targets like OVH hosting website, they released the source code of Mirai . The
Russian Hacker Pleads Guilty to Operating Kelihos Botnet

Russian Hacker Pleads Guilty to Operating Kelihos Botnet

September 13, 2018Mohit Kumar
The Russian man who was accused of operating the infamous Kelihos botnet has finally pleaded guilty in a U.S. federal court. Peter Yuryevich Levashov , 38, of St. Petersburg, Russia, pleaded guilty on Wednesday in U.S. federal court in Connecticut to computer crime, wire fraud, conspiracy and identity theft charges. Levashov, also known by many online aliases including Peter Severa, Petr Levashov, Petr Severa and Sergey Astakhov, has admitted of operating several botnets, including the Storm, Waledac and Kelihos botnets, since the late 1990s until he was arrested in April 2017 . Kelihos botnet, dated back to 2010, was a global network of tens of thousands of infected computers that were used to steal login credentials, send bulk spam emails, and infect computers with ransomware and other malware. Russian Hacker Infects 50,000 Computers With Kelihos Botnet Storm and Waledac botnets also shared Kelihos code, but kelihos was the most notorious botnet of all that alone infect
Three Hackers Plead Guilty to Creating IoT-based Mirai DDoS Botnet

Three Hackers Plead Guilty to Creating IoT-based Mirai DDoS Botnet

December 13, 2017Mohit Kumar
The U.S. federal officials have arrested three hackers who have pleaded guilty to computer-crimes charges for creating and distributing Mirai botnet that crippled some of the world's biggest and most popular websites by launching the massive DDoS attacks last year. According to the federal court documents unsealed Tuesday, Paras Jha (21-year-old from New Jersey), Josiah White (20-year-old Washington) and Dalton Norman (21-year-old from Louisiana) were indicted by an Alaska court last week on multiple charges for their role in massive cyber attacks conducted using Mirai botnet. Mirai is a piece of nasty IoT malware that scans for insecure routers, cameras, DVRs, and other Internet of Things devices which are still using their default passwords and then add them into a botnet network, which is then used to launch DDoS attacks on websites and Internet infrastructure. According to his plea agreement, Jha " conspired to conduct DDoS attacks against websites and web ho
New Mirai Botnet Variant Found Targeting ZyXEL Devices In Argentina

New Mirai Botnet Variant Found Targeting ZyXEL Devices In Argentina

November 28, 2017Swati Khandelwal
While tracking botnet activity on their honeypot traffic, security researchers at Chinese IT security firm Qihoo 360 Netlab discovered a new variant of Mirai —the well known IoT botnet malware that wreaked havoc last year. Last week, researchers noticed an increase in traffic scanning ports 2323 and 23 from hundreds of thousands of unique IP addresses from Argentina in less than a day. The targeted port scans are actively looking for vulnerable internet-connected devices manufactured by ZyXEL Communications using two default telnet credential combinations— admin/CentryL1nk and admin/QwestM0dem —to gain root privileges on the targeted devices. Researchers believe (instead "quite confident") this ongoing campaign is part of a new Mirai variant that has been upgraded to exploit a newly released vulnerability (identified as CVE-2016-10401 ) in ZyXEL PK5001Z modems. "ZyXEL PK5001Z devices have zyad5001 as the su (superuser) password, which makes it easier for rem
Someone is Using Mirai Botnet to Shut Down Internet for an Entire Country

Someone is Using Mirai Botnet to Shut Down Internet for an Entire Country

November 03, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Note — We have published  an updated article on what really happened behind the alleged DDoS attack against Liberia using Mirai botnet. Someone is trying to take down the whole Internet of a country, and partially succeeded, by launching massive distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks using a botnet of insecure IoT devices infected by the Mirai malware. It all started early October when a cyber criminal publicly released the source code of Mirai – a piece of nasty IoT malware designed to scan for insecure IoT devices and enslaves them into a botnet network, which is then used to launch DDoS attacks. Just two weeks ago, the Mirai IoT Botnet caused vast internet outage by launching massive DDoS attacks against DNS provider Dyn, and later it turns out that just 100,000 infected-IoT devices participated in the attacks. Experts believe that the future DDoS attack could reach 10 Tbps, which is enough to take down the whole Internet in any nation state. One such inciden
New IoT Botnet Malware Discovered; Infecting More Devices Worldwide

New IoT Botnet Malware Discovered; Infecting More Devices Worldwide

November 01, 2016Swati Khandelwal
The whole world is still dealing with the Mirai IoT Botnet that caused vast internet outage last Friday by launching massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against the DNS provider Dyn, and researchers have found another nasty IoT botnet. Security researchers at MalwareMustDie have discovered a new malware family designed to turn Linux-based insecure Internet of Things (IoT) devices into a botnet to carry out massive DDoS attacks. Dubbed Linux/IRCTelnet , the nasty malware is written in C++ and, just like Mirai malware , relies on default hard-coded passwords in an effort to infect vulnerable Linux-based IoT devices. The IRCTelnet malware works by brute-forcing a device's Telnet ports, infecting the device's operating system, and then adding it to a botnet network which is controlled through IRC (Internet Relay Chat) – an application layer protocol that enables communication in the form of text. So, every infected bot (IoT device) connects to a mali
Malicious Gaming App Infects More than 1 Million Android Users

Malicious Gaming App Infects More than 1 Million Android Users

July 12, 2015Swati Khandelwal
It's not at all surprising that the Google Play Store is surrounded by a number of malicious applications that may gain users' attention to fall victim for one, but this time it might be even worse than you thought. Threat researchers from security firm ESET have discovered a malicious Facebook-Credentials-Stealing Trojan masquerading as an Android game that has been downloaded by more than a Million Android users. Malicious Android Apps downloaded 50,000-1,000,000 times The Android game, dubbed " Cowboy Adventure ," and another malicious game, dubbed " Jump Chess " – downloaded up to 50,000 times, have since been removed from Google Play Store. However, before taking them off from the app store, the creepy game apps may have compromised an unknown number of victims' Facebook credentials . Both the games were created by the same software developer, Tinker Studio and both were used to gather social media credentials from unsuspec
Hola — A widely popular Free VPN service used as a Giant Botnet

Hola — A widely popular Free VPN service used as a Giant Botnet

May 29, 2015Swati Khandelwal
The bandwidth of Millions of users of a popular free VPN service is being sold without their knowledge in an attempt to cover the cost of its free service, which could result in a vast botnet-for-sale network. " Hola ," a free virtual private network, is designed to help people abroad watch region restricted shows like American Netflix, and other streaming United States media. Hola is selling users' bandwidth: Hola is easy-to-use browser plugin available in the Google Chrome Store with currently more than 6 Million downloads . But, unfortunately, Hola could be used by hackers to maliciously attack websites, potentially putting its users at risk of being involved in illegal or abusive activities. Hola uses a peer-to-peer system to route users' traffic. So, if you are in Denmark and wants to watch a show from America, you might be routed through America-based user's Internet connections. However, Hola is not leaving a chance to make money o
Beebone Botnet Taken Down By International Cybercrime Taskforce

Beebone Botnet Taken Down By International Cybercrime Taskforce

April 10, 2015Swati Khandelwal
U.S. and European law enforcement agencies have shut down a highly sophisticated piece of the botnet that had infected more than 12,000 computers worldwide , allowing hackers to steal victims’ banking information and other sensitive data. The law enforcement agencies from the United States, United Kingdom and the European Union conducted a joint operation to get rid of the botnet across the globe and seized the command-and-control server that had been used to operate the nasty Beebone (also known as AAEH ) botnet . What’s a Botnet? A botnet is a network of large number of computers compromised with malicious software and controlled surreptitiously by hackers without the knowledge of victims. Basically, a "botnet" is a hacker’s "robot" that does the malicious work directed by hackers. Hackers and Cyber Criminals have brushed up their hacking skills and started using Botnets as a cyber weapon to carry out multiple crimes such as DDoS attacks
Hackers Using 'Shellshock' Bash Vulnerability to Launch Botnet Attacks

Hackers Using 'Shellshock' Bash Vulnerability to Launch Botnet Attacks

September 27, 2014Mohit Kumar
Researchers on Thursday discovered a critical remotely exploitable vulnerability in the widely used command-line shell GNU Bourne Again Shell ( Bash ), dubbed " Shellshock " which affects most of the Linux distributions and servers worldwide, and may already have been exploited in the wild to take over Web servers as part of a botnet that is currently trying to infect other servers as well. BOTNET ATTACK IN THE WILD The bot was discovered by the security researcher with the Twitter handle @yinettesys , who reported it on Github and said it appeared to be remotely controlled by miscreants, which indicates that the vulnerability is already being used maliciously by the hackers. The vulnerability (CVE-2014-6271) , which came to light on Wednesday, affects versions 1.14 through 4.3 of GNU Bash and could become a dangerous threat to Linux/Unix and Apple users if the patches to BASH are not applied to the operating systems. However, the patches for the vulnerabil
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