WORLD


Zombie computer - a gadget taken out of your control

Baku, May 10, AZERTAC

The zombie computer, computer or personal computer (PC) connected to the Internet and taken over by a computer worm, virus, or other “malware.”

Groups of such machines, called botnets (from a combination of robot and network), often carry out criminal actions without their owners’ detecting any unusual activity.

Over time, however, most zombie computers accumulate so much malware that they become unusable by their owners. Often, the only cure for heavily infected machines is to completely erase the hard drive and reinstall the operating system.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, there are millions of zombie computers in the world, about one-fourth of them located in the United States.

The most typical use of botnets is for widely disseminating spam (unwanted commercial e-mail), which makes it difficult to determine the original spammer.

The largest known botnet was uncovered in April 2009.

The criminals were discovered after they posted an advertisement on a criminal “black-hat” site offering to rent out portions of their botnet.

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