Businesses Not Immune to Botnets, Report Warns

A new report delivers best practices on dealing with this spam vector.

 By Alex Goldman
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Ten to 25 percent of broadband networks are likely infected by bots, and bots cause 90 percent of spam, according to the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG), a coalition of security companies, bandwidth providers, and other interested parties.

MAAWG has issued a report on the problem as well as advice for IT managers, titled "Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group Common Best Practices for Mitigating Large Scale Bot Infections in Residential Networks" (available here in .PDF format). It details best practices for ISPs for dealing with the issue and provides a list of software for handling bot infections.

"ISPs have expressed concern about the problem," Michael O'Reirdan, MAAWG chairman, told InternetNews.com. "After all, the bot economy is about ripping people off. Enterprise IT should be as worried about the problem as anyone else. Enterprises have PCs that wander around the planet, aren't always patch, and travel between home and work."

There is a lot of evidence that there are bots on corporate networks, he added. "Corporate networks are especially valuable to criminals because they host valuable treasury or bank transactions."

Bot police best practices

The recommendations on the MAAWG report will be familiar to IT managers and includes the Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool, several online anti-virus scanners, and various applications that specialize in finding rootkits, spyware, adware, and bots.

Learn about the report's recommendations at InternetNews.com.

This article was originally published on Aug 5, 2009
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