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News

Anti-botnet seminar programme underway

FireEye : 15 October, 2007  (Technical Article)
FireEye raises awareness of protection from Botnets in roadshow conducted by cyber-crime expert
FireEye continues its strategic momentum in the war against botnet-driven cybercrime with industry speaking engagements geared to educate government, education, and technology audiences about the approaches available to counter the threats and damages incurred through the current Botnet pandemic. Experts estimate approximately 150 million bot-infected computers worldwide are used for nefarious Botnet activities, yet there has not been a coordinated security response, nor an avenue for such a response, from victims of Botnet infiltrations. Through a series of upcoming industry events, FireEye seeks to bring greater understanding of botnets to IT and security professionals, informing and strengthening their anti-botnet protection initiatives.

FireEye opens the Cyber Security Summit, co-hosted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), University of Tennessee, Fountainhead College of Technology and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), with a presentation on virtualization and its role in securing the network. On October 16, Dr Michael Staggs, chief investigator at FireEye, will speak on the topic, "Beyond Data Centre Consolidation: Realising Virtualisation's Network Security Capabilities." Additionally, early Internet architect and technologist, Johnson Agogbua will be speaking at Technology Managers Forum's Security Forum 2007, which features Emerging Trends in Enterprise Security on October 18 in New York. Agogbua is an external advocate and evangelist of FireEye's technical approach and vision for protecting all customers from Botnet threats. He is a member of the United States FCC Technological Advisory Council and Network World magazine named Agogbua as one of the 50 "On Power's Edge."

Today, bot herders hijack millions of PCs and link them together into a criminal network perpetrating a wide range of illegal activities. Enterprise, consumer, and government computers are now unwitting perpetrators, accomplices, and victims in the estimated $67 billion computer-based crime wave hitting the Internet. Security measures must take into account the tools and tactics of criminal syndicates in order to be effective. By providing a deep understanding of bot herder criminality and the underlying Botnet infrastructure, FireEye equips IT security and law enforcement professionals with the knowledge and tools to eliminate bots from their network, protect their critical business infrastructure, and prevent data compromises from taking place. FireEye is sharing critical knowledge about the entire cybercrime cycle - from the techniques employed to 'recruit' bot machines to the ultimate use of botnets for extortion, espionage, and even cyberterrorism.

"Education leads to understanding but the demand for education is created by the awareness of a problem," said Dr Michael Staggs, chief investigator at FireEye. "Clearly, the industry is aware of the Botnet threat as evidenced by the stream of invitations for FireEye to speak to various IT security and law enforcement audiences. We are honoured to play a key role in helping them protect against botnets."

Dr Staggs' presentation this week at the Cyber Security Summit will discuss how analysis of virtual victim (host) machines can identify, thwart, and prevent future network-based attacks from botnets and zero-day malware as well as enable an automated security response to the near-infinite variants of Botnet malware. FireEye's presentation takes place at 9:00 a.m. on October 16 at the Carolyn Brown Memorial University Centre on the campus of the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tenn.

Dr Staggs is also conducting a three-day Botnet Forensics course as part of the State of Colorado's InfraGard Membership Training beginning October 30. InfraGard is an FBI program that facilitates support between the information technology industry and academia and the FBI's investigative efforts in the cybercrime arena. In September, Dr Staggs shared anti-botnet techniques and practices with state and local government IT leaders attending the Colorado Digital Government Summit & Cyber Security Summit during his talk, "Botnets - Current State of the Net." He also addressed students, faculty, government officials and industry professionals at Colorado State University's FutureVisions Symposium discussing, "Botnets - Zombies, Masters, Victim by the Horde."

"FireEye's efforts in anti-botnet protection education are tremendously valuable to our employees and constituents," said Mark Weatherford, chief information security officer, State of Colorado. "I'd like to personally commend FireEye for its outreach and commitment to alleviating the pervasive Botnet problem. The potential damages caused by botnets extend far beyond direct organizational resource and revenue losses, which in and of themselves are staggering."

As part of Technology Managers Forum's Security Forum 2007, Johnson Agogbua will be speaking on a panel entitled, "Corporate Challenge: IT Security Priorities - What's Hot and What's Not" at 9:30 a.m., October 18, in Bridgewaters, 11 Fulton Street at the South Street Seaport, New York. Agogbua is a leading Internet pioneer and entrepreneur as well as anti-botnet evangelist for FireEye. He has co-founded several technology companies including Movaz Networks, Broadband Office, and Zephion Networks as well as heading up Global Network Engineering and Architecture at UUNET Technologies where he was in charge of the world's largest network.

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