Koobface servers closed down


The Koobface botnet took a serious hit this weekend as servers hosting its command and control (C&C) centre were taken down.

The main C&C centre was located on servers based at UK hosting company Coreix.

Alan Dean, financial director at Coreix, confirmed the company had suspended services to three servers on Friday as part of an investigation into the Koobface gang.

"Those investigations are ongoing. We therefore do not wish to make any further statement at the moment which might, even in some small way, impact on those investigations," Dean told IT PRO.

"We stress our commitment to working with police to bring the perpetrators of crime to justice and to removing any sites or services which breach any laws or the terms of our Acceptable Use Policy."

Between June 2009 and June 2010, Koobface was able to earn its operators $2 million (1.24 million) as it forced victims to download malware and then help carry out click fraud, according to research undertaken by the Information Warfare Monitor.

This click fraud would generate funds through pay-per-click and pay-per-install schemes, the report found.

Infected computers were forced to fake clicks on ads or install buttons. Every time a click was faked, money would be handed to the operators from other members of affiliate programmes.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.