Thursday, January 15, 2009

Waledac is the New Storm

Kelly Jackson Higgins writes on Dark Reading:

It's official: Storm is back. The notorious botnet that ballooned into one of the biggest botnets ever and then basically disappeared for months last year is rebuilding -- with all-new malware and a more sustainable architecture less likely to be infiltrated and shut down.

Researchers during the past weeks have been speculating about similarities between the new Waledac, a.k.a. Waled, botnet and Storm. Now new evidence has helped confirm that this new botnet is, indeed, Storm reincarnated.

Storm all but disappeared off of the grid last year, basically going dormant in mid-September after its last major spam campaign in July -- a "World War III" scam. In October, researchers started to write off Storm, at least in the short term. But now they say the big botnet has reinvented itself with new binary bot code, and that it is no longer using noisy peer-to-peer communications among its bots. It has instead moved to HTTP communications, which helps camouflage its activity among other Web traffic.

Jose Nazario, manager of security research for Arbor Networks, says he was initially skeptical of speculation that Waledac and Storm were one in the same. But Nazario says the latest findings on the malcode and its activity -- the botnet is using many of the same IP addresses that were used in Storm -- changed his mind. "[The Waledac bots] are talking to the same servers we saw in Storm," he says.

More here.


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