Print 102 comment(s) - last by Iketh.. on Oct 18 at 2:50 AM

Unbeknowst to you, your computer could be a double agent, committing cybercrime as part of a internet-connected botnet. Over 2.2 million American PCs are part of some botnet, according to Microsoft.  (Source: Ubisoft)
U.S. leads the world in botnet virus infection rates

According to a new 240-page security report from Microsoft dubbed the Security Intelligence Report, America is among the most infected countries in the world when it comes to botnets.  The report uses information collected in the first half of 2010 via the Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool.

Over 2.2 million PCs in the U.S. are infected with a virus that makes them part of one of the internet's massive botnets.  The term "botnet" refers to a group of connected computers that can be used for ill purposes such as spamming, distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, and mass credit card fraud.

Brazil came in second place for most infected computers, with 550,000 botnet-infected PCs.  Per computer population, though South Korea had the highest rate (though its total number of infected machines is lower than that of the U.S. or Brazil).  In South Korea 14.6 out of 1,000 PCs are in a botnet, versus 5.2 computers out of 1,000 in the U.S.

Cliff Evans, head of security and identity at Microsoft UK, comments to 
BBC News, "Most people have this idea of a virus and how it used to announce itself.  Few people know about botnets."

Fewer people perhaps know about Microsoft's Malicious Software Removal Tool (MRT).  MRT has been is a free tool Microsoft includes with Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7.  First released in 2005, the tool is easy to run -- just go to "Start", type "run" in the search bar, and then type "mrt" (case insensitive) in the resulting popup.  The tool will then activate and be ready to scan your computer and remove many common types of malware.

Perhaps if everyone learns how to use the MRT, America can escape earning the dubious distinction of being the world's biggest botnet participant in 2011.  Given the general public's ignorance of security, that seems unlikely, though.

Despite the difficulty in getting the public to practice proper security, Microsoft is taking steps to try to win the war against botnet masters on its own.  The company recently seized control over 276 internet domains that were being used by botnet owners.  And it has beefed up the securityof its most recent operating system, Windows 7, making it harder to infect new PCs.

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

By dgingeri on 10/14/2010 12:49:53 PM , Rating: 5
Maybe MS should put the MRT in as an automatic scan while doing the automatic updates, then automatically remove known bot programs without notifying the user. The user would never know unless he was running one intentionally.

RE: idea
By Spivonious on 10/14/2010 1:01:38 PM , Rating: 5
They've done this since 2006. It shows you how many people aren't running updates.

RE: idea
By sprockkets on 10/14/10, Rating: 0
RE: idea
By Mitch101 on 10/14/2010 1:17:03 PM , Rating: 2
You can repair Windows update in Windows 7. Lots of repair options to the OS should these kind of things happen.

RE: idea
By sprockkets on 10/14/2010 1:21:34 PM , Rating: 2
You can repair it in Windows any version. What ends up happening is it never gets fixed until you reinstall windows because the error code it gives is the wonderful "I have no ucking clue what is wrong" error.

Seriously, I've spent hours on with Microsoft for customers on this issue (since it is a security issue the support is free), and they can't figure it out either.

RE: idea
By michael67 on 10/16/2010 11:05:31 AM , Rating: 2
Most people dont have a clue how to secure there PC i wrote on the WoW guild forum a post how to get your PC reasonable save

Hi there some of us have ore at least know someone that got there account hacked.

It happened last week to a friend of mine and spend all night fixing her damn computer and implementing new security , so i tough i write up what what i have done to prevent hack's on guild members and missing raids.

1. Most of the best preventive measure is just to prevent hacks,
To make them very hard and 90% of them impossible , here is a excellent link how to do that, its the same way company's secure there networks.
(do it only works in the non home versions of windows XP/Vista/7 and i would recommend upgrading to a other version)
Its probably for some a bid hard to follow, and if you don't know how, ask someone to help you, but i would really recommend doing this.

ps. Also do not turn of UAC in win Vista/7 and don't blindly click yes when it pop's up (and yes i know its a pain, but so is getting hacked)

2. Get a GOOD anti virus program !!!
AVG free only is not enough neither is Norton junkware

G-Data total care is a good program i can recommend, as it always ranks top in anti virus test's and is not to expensive specially if you take the 3PCs option

If you are a cheap ass and don't wane spend 40 bugs a year get AVG free but then point 3 is not only highly recommend but a must, preferably run A-squared every time before you start up wow

3. No Anti virus software (AV) is perfect,
Get extra FREE versions of AV and do at least once a week a manual scan ore after bin browsing porn ore have installed cracked programs.
Also because these are all manual scan programs they wont slow you computer during gaming.

These are the minimum i would install:
a-squared Free
Spybot search and destroy
Also run the Immunize option it prevents files to be changed whit out you knowing it

A online virus scan is also something i would recommend once in a wile, House-call, ESET, Panda are good, kaspersky is offline making a new scanner but if back is properly one of the best.

4. A small but very nice program is, Secunia Personal Software Inspector (PSI)
Its a small program that checks version Nr of you programs and compare's it whit a list online for programs whit security updates, its very small and uses almost no memory and resources.
Its like windows update for the rest of your programs
The new Beta 2.0 dose now all update's automatically ware possible

5. Authenticator: Get one .

This all may seem to some of you over the top, but on the other hand getting hacked is no fun eider, specially for people whit access to the guild bank, as it is a account hackers dream.

And doing these manual scans is not that hard just start one when your getting food taking a dump getting to sleep ore taking a bad because you really stink ore so, and your PC is doing noting anyway, security its just a mind set, and a fact of live we have to live whit, ore get hacked ;-)

Hope this will help some people getting there security up to date.

After this post a lot less people got hacked

RE: idea
By leexgx on 10/17/2010 9:31:33 PM , Rating: 2
the RSA key {wow Authenticator}(one off fee i think for p&p and the device) or an Google phone with the WOW Authenticator maker fpr android (Free i think)

RE: idea
By dgingeri on 10/14/2010 1:16:47 PM , Rating: 2
someone did not sense the sarcasm...

RE: idea
By sprockkets on 10/14/2010 1:24:40 PM , Rating: 1
IF the article is correct AND the tool does NOT run when it is installed, AND it does NOT say you have to run it manually to detect junk, then the tool is a FAILURE.

Seriously, it doesn't seem like it ever runs through and does a scan when it installs on an update, so there may be truth to this.

RE: idea
By dgingeri on 10/14/2010 1:42:34 PM , Rating: 3
I do remember with some previous Windows XP machines (I'm a professional corporate support tech, so I see a lot of machines with various problems) that the MRT did automatically remove some things and put entries in the event log about them.

In one particular case, I had a laptop user who was away from the office most of the time. (He lived in Minnesota and the office was in Denver.) He came in complaining about slowness and popups during a convention. He didn't need his laptop for the day, so he wanted me to clean it up. I went through and ran spybot and AV scans first. Those removed several things, but the slowness didn't go away. I then found that automatic updates hadn't run for several months, so I installed the updates. The slowness disappeared, so I looked in the event log. it listed that it had removed 3 things that the spybot and AV scans had missed, but it never popped up anything to tell me that.

So, the tool at least used to automatically remove some things without notice. I never knew there was a way to run it manually until today.

RE: idea
By sprockkets on 10/14/10, Rating: -1
RE: idea
By Luticus on 10/14/2010 3:13:13 PM , Rating: 2
see, in my experiance it's the other way around. personally though i use microsoft security essentials. best there is as far as i can tell.

RE: idea
By sprockkets on 10/14/10, Rating: -1
RE: idea
By Luticus on 10/14/2010 4:46:37 PM , Rating: 2
lol the rate down is probably due to your reference to spybot as useless. spybot may not be the end-all be-all it used to be back in the day but useless is a bit of a stretch. honestly i've seen it be fairly effective with detection and removal.

RE: idea
By sprockkets on 10/14/10, Rating: -1
RE: idea
By dark matter on 10/15/2010 2:53:09 AM , Rating: 4
Don't you just love it when people have to resort to calling other people "losers" in their debates. I always find it gives the poster that air of credibility they wouldn't normally get if they merely presented a reasoned and referenced argument.

RE: idea
By 0ldman on 10/15/2010 6:33:34 PM , Rating: 1
If you rely on one antispyware application then you are still infected.

It is that simple.

Nothing out there finds everything.

These little spyware kiddies just keep pooping new bugs and the companies out there trying to get rid of them just can't keep up. Spybot finds some, MalwareBlaster finds some, SuperAntispyware, Trendmicro, MS, AVG, Sophos, etc...

Norton and McAfee seem to be pretty good at separating people from their money, but not much more.

There really isn't a light duty antivirus program anymore and I haven't found one that catches everything yet.

RE: idea
By chick0n on 10/15/10, Rating: -1
RE: idea
By dark matter on 10/15/2010 2:54:47 AM , Rating: 3
With your attitude you wouldn't even cut the grade flipping burgers.

RE: idea
By Iketh on 10/18/2010 2:50:42 AM , Rating: 2
the reason these windows add-ons run in the background and dont notify you of anything is to prevent MS from being sued again for monopolization, as they did with Internet Explorer

if Defender and Malicious Software Removal were "up front and personal" with the end-user, MS would be right back in court

RE: idea
By MrTeal on 10/14/2010 1:50:03 PM , Rating: 5
I'm just waiting for the EU lawsuit, billion dollar fine and inevitable ballot box where you have to choose which malware removal tool you want to install when you first load windows.

"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan

Most Popular ArticlesAre you ready for this ? HyperDrive Aircraft
September 24, 2016, 9:29 AM
Leaked – Samsung S8 is a Dream and a Dream 2
September 25, 2016, 8:00 AM
Inspiron Laptops & 2-in-1 PCs
September 25, 2016, 9:00 AM
Snapchat’s New Sunglasses are a Spectacle – No Pun Intended
September 24, 2016, 9:02 AM
Walmart may get "Robot Shopping Carts?"
September 17, 2016, 6:01 AM

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki