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Black Market Botnets Nathan Friess and John Aycock

Summary: Black Market Botnets
Nathan Friess and John Aycock
Department of Computer Science
University of Calgary
2500 University Drive N.W.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N 1N4
TR 2007-873-25, July 2007
Botnets have yet to be exploited to their full potential, because they have yet
to take advantage of all the information available to them. The zombie computers
that comprise a botnet have access to the private documents of the people that use
the computers. A botmaster who controls the botnet can harvest the documents and
sell them to third parties, creating a viable if illegal online business. We outline
motivations for such a business model, as well as the mechanics of a possible
implementation. We then present a variety of defenses against this scenario.
1 Introduction
Many details about people are best retrieved at the source: the computer which a person
uses to store their information digitally. Users enter information about almost every
aspect of their lives. This is particularly true in a business environment, where email


Source: Aycock, John - Department of Computer Science, University of Calgary


Collections: Computer Technologies and Information Sciences