The Online Protection Racket

from the new-technology,-same-old-crime dept

For a few years now, people have been warning about the increasing number of “zombie” machines out there that have been infected with trojan horses that let hackers control their machines. In many cases, it sounds like these machines are being used in a modern update to the old protection racket where big guys with baseball bats would walk around to local businesses and threaten to break your kneecaps unless you paid up. The difference now, is that the scammers threaten to take down your website, using a denial of service attack from thousands of zombie machines. Right now, the attacks are mostly focused on things like online casinos where the incentive to pay up is pretty high.

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