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News

Manchester malware authors arrested in Manchester

Sophos : 20 November, 2009  (Technical Article)
The e-Crime Unit has arrested two suspects in relation to malware authors responsible for infecting computers and harvesting banking details
IT security and data protection firm Sophos has welcomed the news that British police have arrested two people suspected of involvement in a computer crime gang that spread malware around the world.

According to reports, a man and a woman were arrested in Manchester in a swoop by officers from the Metropolitan Police's Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU).

'Zbot, also known as Zeus, is one of the most notorious pieces of malware to have been seen recently,' said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos. 'It's not just a single piece of malicious software - it's a family with many different members, all adopting different disguises in their attempt to infect users, and steal information that could allow hackers to break into your bank account and social networking profiles.'

Sophos advises that typically the Zbot Trojan horse has been spammed out to unsuspecting internet users using a variety of social engineering tricks to persuade the unwary into opening an attachment or click on a link leading to a malicious webpage.

'Once the bad guys have your bank account details they can raid your finances, if they have grabbed your Facebook or MySpace password they can use your account as a springboard for sending out more attacks to your friends and family,' continued Cluley. 'Furthermore, Zbot hijacks your computer, making it part of a criminal botnet. That means it can be used by remote hackers without your knowledge to spread spam, distribute more malicious attacks and launch denial-of-service attacks. If the police have begun to unravel the Zbot gang then that's something that should definitely be applauded.'

Sophos recommends all computer users protect themselves with a consolidated solution which can protect their networks, email and web gateways against the threats of hackers, malware, spyware and spam.
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