Researchers have discovered a major botnet operating out of the Ukraine that has infected 1.9 million machines, including large corporate and government PCs mainly in the U.S.
The botnet, which appears to be larger than the infamous Storm botnet was in its heyday, has infected machines from some 77 government-owned domains — 51 of which are U.S. government ones, according to Ophir Shalltin, marketing director of Finjan, which recently found the botnet. Shalltin says the botnet is controlled by six individuals and is hosted in Ukraine.
Aside from its massive size and scope, what is also striking about the botnet is what its malware can do to an infected machine. The malware lets an attacker read the victim’s email, communicate via HTTP in the botnet, inject code into other processes, visit Websites without the user knowing, and register as a background service on the infected machine, for instance. The bots communicate with their command and control systems via HTTP.