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Zeus Malware Now Better for Attackers

The most recent edition of the Zeus DIY (do-it-yourself) crimeware kit is specifically designed to foil potential Web-pirates. This is possible with the malware initiating an activation scheme of a hardware- based product just like it's seen in Microsoft Windows.

Zeus' latest edition, carrying bare-bone abilities, apparently bears a minimum cost of $4,000, while extra capabilities can cost higher to a sum of $10,000. Moreover, with the newest edition, "casual copying" as Microsoft describes, can be prevented. For that, just one PC must be running the program's licensed version. Post its installation, the user needs to acquire a key suitable only for that PC.

According to an analysis of the latest version of Zeus published in the second week of February by SecureWorks, the company hasn't observed malware control of this degree earlier, as reported by Theregister.co.uk on March 12, 2010.

Moreover, Zeus makers haven't just borrowed the Microsoft page pertaining to the licensing of a hardware product. They have even thrust the package's different forms, which are priced differently according to their capabilities. Similar to the choice by Windows users between the high-priced Windows 7 Business and the less expensive Windows 7 Starter, bot-herders too enjoy multiple Zeus options.

As commented by SecureWorks' specialists, previous editions of Zeus can be obtained without paying any fee. However, the latest Zeus along with its software programs isn't economical. Incidentally, the Zeus package has been out since 2009-end. In the secret world of cyber-criminals, scammers frequently make crimeware purchases via Web Money or Western Union, the specialists added.

According to Jackson, Zeus' recent edition can also penetrate newer defenses associated with dual-factor authentication for banking transactions. It particularly helps in enabling dealings valuing as-high-as $100,000, as reported by ComputerWorldUK.com on March 12, 2010.

Jackson further added that Zeus is designed to spot high-level, high-value targets related to Internet banking. It just signals the remote bot-master and the attacker manages an extremely automated transfer into his chosen account(s).

Finally, after the introduction of the new Zeus DIY kit, the experts of SecureWorks wonders about the features of the next version, with the current one being a beta edition.

Related article: Zeus Trojan Stole Huge Amount of Information

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