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Intel spearheaded international effort to down Beebone botnet

Intel has announced that it has been involved in a major international co-operative effort to take down a polymorphic botnet by the name of Beebone.

The botnet facilitated the installation of further malware onto compromised machines, which could be anything from password sniffers to ransomware or other nastiness.

Intel noted that it first discovered the threat over a year ago, in March 2014, and by September of last year had gathered enough intelligence on the botnet to approach various international crime agencies to enlist their help.

In the end, Intel Security worked with Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre, the FBI and Dutch authorities to eliminate the threat.

That’s no mean feat, as the sophisticated malware is difficult to detect due to its polymorphic (changing) nature – at one of its peak periods of operation, in excess of 100,000 instances of Beebone were detected by McAfee (and that number only included data from Intel Security, so the overall infection rate would obviously have been much higher than this).

Computer across some 200 countries were affected.

Raj Samani, EMEA CTO at McAfee, commented: “This operation is further evidence that only a combined response is capable of slowing down the every growing menace of cybercrime. With both public and private agencies working together to battle the ever-evolving cyber-threat do we have a chance of bringing them down and making the online world a safer place for all.”