Srizbi Botnet - Incidents - The "Ron Paul" Incident

The "Ron Paul" Incident

In October 2007, several anti-spam firms noticed an unusual political spam campaign emerging. Unlike the usual messages about counterfeit watches, stocks, or penis enlargement, the mail contained promotional information about United States presidential candidate Ron Paul. The Ron Paul camp dismissed the spam as being not related to the official presidential campaign. A spokesman told the press: "If it is true, it could be done by a well-intentioned yet misguided supporter or someone with bad intentions trying to embarrass the campaign. Either way, this is independent work, and we have no connection."

The spam was ultimately confirmed as having come from the Srizbi network. Through the capture of one of the control servers involved, investigators learned that the spam message had been sent to up to 160 million email addresses by as few as 3,000 bot computers. The spammer has only been identified by his Internet handle "nenastnyj" (Ненастный, means "rainy" or "foul", as in "rainy day, foul weather" in Russian); his or her real identity has not been determined.

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