Teenage British Trojan distributor escapes jail

Randex worm used to launch DDoS attacks

A 16 year-old Briton was convicted last week for releasing the Randex trojan, which was used to relay spam through infected PCs.

The teenager had his six-month sentence suspended on probation by the South Cheshire juvenile court in Crewe. He belonged to a group of juveniles from the US and Canada, which offered spammers access to a botnet of compromised PCs in change for money. Because all suspects are juvenile, none will have to serve a prison sentence, according to Heise Online, the German website.

Earlier this year c't, the German computer magazine (which is owned by Heise), obtained evidence that virus writers were selling the IP addresses of PCs infected with Trojans to spammers. A German college student from Marburg tracked down the distributor of the computer virus in the UK, and c't was then able to buy access to the infected machines. c’t passed on all the information to New Scotland Yard, which began an investigation, along with Microsoft.

The Randex worm was also reported used to launch Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) attacks against a number of ecommerce sites, including Weaknees.com from Los Angeles. According to the Criminal Complaint (Pdf) the companies involved lost over $2m in revenue and costs. ®

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