Botnets are responsible for the majority of spam that make their way into our mailboxes, according to a recent report published by Symantec’s MessageLabs.
The report also points out to the fact botnets are responsible for sending over 87 percent of all spam sent and that new botnets are emerging on the internet.
According to the document, Rustock remains one of largest and oldest botnets in existence and has grown double in size since June while a new botnet by the name of Maazben has emerged and it too is experiencing rapid growth.
The report also says that actions against botnet friendly ISPs have helped in the containment of spam on the internet. However it notes that while some botnets have been affected by closure, newer botnets have quickly emerged to replace them.
Expressing his views on the development Paul Wood, senior analyst at Symantec mentioned “Over the past year, we have seen a number of ISP’s taken offline for hosting botnet activity resulting in a case of sink or swim and an ensuing shift in botnet power."
Unfortunately, botnet technology like any other malware spewing structure evolve constantly which means that even if blacklisted ISPs are closed, criminals will find a way around.
This is particularly true as there is a surge in internet consumption in third world and emerging countries where the exploding number of ISPs make it much easier to start a rogue spam campaign and/or to launch botnet seeding campaigns.