Feeds

Crooks make it rain by seeding cloud with zombies

Your compute resources rented out

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Malware operators are once again trying to generate profits from the cloud, this time by stealing the resources of infected computers and selling them to a new distributed-computing network, researchers from Kaspersky said.

After infecting a computer, the malware downloads and installs the MetaTrader 5 Tester Agent, software that uses spare CPU cycles to test custom-written software used in financial trading systems. Operator MetaQuotes Software Corp. has more details about how to participate in its MQL5 Cloud Network here. Trojan-Downloader.Win32.MQL5Miner.a, as Kaspersky has christened the malware, sets up an account controlled by the attackers that gets credited.

With hundreds of millions of computers sitting idle on desktops around the world, there's an untold number of petaflops worth of resources that go unused each day. Legitimate software developers, such as those behind the SETI Project, have been tapping these spare CPU cycles for years. Botnet operators do much the same thing when they use infected computers to send spam or wage denial-of-service attacks.

Over the past few months, crooks have expanded the revenue potential of infected machines by using their spare resources to perform legitimate tasks. A variety of titles, including Infostealer.Coinbit,, use a hijacked PC's GPU and other resources to mine the digital currency known as Bitcoin.

“When it comes to making money, cybercriminals don't miss a trick,” Kaspersky Lab Expert Vyacheslav Zakorzhevsky wrote. “That includes exploiting the resources of infected computers without their owners' knowledge or consent.”

The malware appears to spread through email attachments. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?