Finjan Discovered Online Ring of Criminals Trading in Botnets

Security experts at Finjan have found an advanced online network that sells and buys access to bot-infected computers, leading to worries that governments, businesses as well as household PCs are increasingly being exposed to cyber crime.

The network, named GoldenCashWorld, functions as a botnets shop where parties interested in buying and selling infected PCs and websites could approach. These infected computers could be exploited for spamming activities, collecting personal information and documents as well as for injecting malicious code into fresh websites that would be further transmitted to more computers.

Furthermore, the online network possesses tools to develop malware and has already pilfered login data for approximately 100,000 legitimate websites. Although it seems GoldenCashWorld is based in Russia, approximately 40% of the PCs that the network has compromised belong to companies and individuals in the USA.

Yuval Ben-Itzhak, Chief Technology Officer, Finjan, said that GoldenCashWorld was the most sophisticated crime network his company had discovered, as reported by SFGate on June 16, 2009. Ben-Itzhak added that the criminals were attempting to put together all the fundamentals of online crime as well as facilitating an increasing number of people to get involved in it.

Reportedly, the GoldenCashWorld operators placed proxy servers around their website to camouflage the URL of the site.

Besides, the network also enjoys the facility of hiring people to build PC networks and to steal login data of authorized websites so that the sites could be infected.

Prices are differently set for different bots depending on their locations. These are collected into groups of 1,000 each before sale.

Moreover, researchers at Finjan disclose that numerous security investigators have been prevented against reaching the network. They found that GoldenCashWorld had created a blacklist of IP addresses of Microsoft, Google, Kaspersky Lab, Trend Micro, Sunbelt Software, BitDefender and Cyveillance among others.

Commenting on the point, the security researchers stated that in the game of cyber crime, the good guys have long been chasing the bad guys, but modern cyber criminals are much better skilled compared to those even a few years ago.

Related article: Finjan Brings Out Report on Web Malware

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