A small success in the war on Spam

At Tamite IT Support Sussex we are very aware of the problems malware can cause our customers, there is a constant war being waged against the spammers and criminal gangs responsible for producing and spreading malware. Occasionally the triumphs of the groups that combat Cybercrime make the news. This month a group of researchers that include security vendor FireEye have claimed a success in the war against Spam, Grum, the botnet credited with at one point being responsible for a third of all Spam on the Internet sending out around 18 billion spam emails a day, has been shutdown.

Tamite IT support Sussex IT Security Training gives you the knowledge to protect your systems and play your part in combating Cyber Crime.

The demise of the Botnet known as Grum is good news for everyone using the Internet as Spam presents a significant overhead to the infrastructures that support the web, if we had no Spam, the Internet would run faster due to the reduction in bandwidth and processing wasted carrying information that at best is a nuisance to the recipients, you could even argue from a green point of view that vast amounts of energy are being wasted with resulting CO2 emissions.

Many of you won’t even be aware of what a Botnet is and how it works, so for the uninitiated I will describe how it works.

Our PCs are constantly under attack by criminal gangs trying to plant programs we call Viruses, Trojans, Spyware etc. these can be delivered in many ways; Browsing, Social Networking, Emails and a host of other means.

If one of these programs manages to attach itself to your Computer you may well have been recruited as part of a botnet.

Once enslaved to the botnet your PC will come under the control of a server that directs and coordinates operations. Quite often they are capable of a number of functions, maybe sending out Spam or more exciting taking part in a Dos attack (look that one up on Wikipedia). Botnets are often hired out to other criminals to carry out such projects.

Now the sobering thought, According to Spamhaus’ figures, Grum used an average of 120,000 IP addresses to distribute its emails.

That means at the point the servers were taken down 120,000 PCs were being controlled by Grum. They in all probability are still carrying the code that enslaved them to Grum and other Criminal gangs won’t waste time in scrambling to recruit these machines to their Botnets.

Of course organisations like Scrum rely on people being lax with their security. Properly protected Networks are less likely to harbour infected PCs and so the next time you complain about the amount of Spam you receive consider the fact that if your aren’t properly protecting your PC you may be part of the problem.

Tamite IT Support Sussex are in the business of providing Software, Support and IT Security Training Courses to help keep your data secure.

In our IT Security Training Courses we describe simply and concisely the elements that are key to protecting your PC’s and network. By protecting ourselves we can all play our part in the reduction of cyber crim

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