The German police on Thursday revealed that one of the world’s biggest networks of hijacked computers, which is suspected of attacking online banking customers, has been targeted by police in 10 countries.
Authorities said that they carried out raids in an internationally coordinated campaign and seized servers and website domains along with arrest of suspected leaders of a criminal organization. According to officials, 39 servers and several hundred thousand domains were seized, depriving criminals of control of more than 50,000 computers in Germany alone.
In the shocking revelation, the police informed that these hijacked computers were used to form a “botnet” to hijack other websites.
Recently, just like a Hollywood movie, hackers tried to create the world’s biggest botnet, or an army of zombie computers, by infecting the routers of 900,000 Deutsche Telekom with malicious software.
Deutsche Telekom executives said, although the attack failed, but it froze the routers, causing temporary suspension of internet in homes, businesses and government offices across Germany on Sunday and Monday.
The Police claimed that the criminals had used the botnet that was targeted in Wednesday’s international raids, known as “AVALANCHE” since 2009 to send phishing and spam emails.
The authorities learnt that more than a million emails were sent per week with malicious attachments or links and when users opened the attachment or clicked on the link, their infected computers became part of the botnet.
These extensive raids were materialized after more than four years of vigorous investigation by specialists in 41 countries. Authorities have started to take action against the 16 identified suspected leaders of the organization from 10 different countries.
A court in Verden, northern Germany, has issued arrest warrants for seven people on suspicion of forming a criminal organization, commercial computer fraud and other criminal offences.
Every coin has two sides! Though, with an improvement in technology every single day, the lives of people are getting much easier across the globe, but, at the same time, the misuse of this increasing technology can cost a huge amount to a nation and its civilians.