Could you be part of the Zombie Net?

Not you specifically but your computer sure could. Have you ever seen any of the following things come up in a virus scan on your computer?

Aleuron Trojan
TDL3 or TDL4 Rootkit
TDSS

The Aleuron Trojan is a delivery mechanism for the TDLx rootkits. A rootkit is a malicious piece of software that hides in the background on your computer but can give someone else control of it. A Zombie Net is a group of infected computers that acts as one because it is controlled by the same version of malware; and on the dark side of computing folks sell access to Zombie Nets for real money.

What could someone do with a Zombie Net? For our purposes we will talk about a 20,000 computer (typical) Zombie Net. The controller (or the person who has bought control) can issue a command to the entire group telling them to do something like hit microsoft.com over and over again. This is an example of what is called a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack and is designed to bring the target website down by overwhelming it with requests from all different locations.

But these days the more valuable item is harvesting EMail addresses. Every infected computer can provide a list of 500+ EMail addresses to the Zombie Net controllers that can then be sold to spammers. So you get spam not necessairily because you have a virus, but one of your friends did and they got your EMail address off of their computer. Please note that the Address Book is only one place they get these addresses, there are many more.

Almost everyone knows that they should have a good AV program and make sure it is not expired and it is updating, but it still surprises me how many folks have a Windows machine with an expired AV or even with no AV at all! Might as well paint a big target on your computer’s back if that is the plan.

What do we recommend for AV? The one and only VIPRE. Small, fast, effective and out of your way, with US based Tech Support where the folks speak clear English, and all of that for much less than the competition. The only brand we recommend.

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