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Raising a Botnet in Captivity

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Virus behind bars

Technology Review

To catch a criminal, sometimes you have to think like one.

So researchers on the trail of cybercrooks that use armies of infected computers, known as botnets, to send out spam e-mail or to attack websites are building botnets of their own. Fortunately, the new approach is being tested using a high-powered computing cluster that is safely isolated from the Internet.

"We set up what we thought would be the closest to a botnet in the wild," says Pierre-Marc Bureau, a researcher with computer security firm ESET, part of the project led by a team at Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal with collaborators at Nancy University, France, and Carlton University, Canada. "To our knowledge, this is the first such realistic experiment," he says.

From Technology Review
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