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Huge 'botnet' amputated, but criminals reconnect

Wed, 03/10/2010 - 4:30pm
JORDAN ROBERTSON - AP Technology Writer - Associated Press

The sudden takedown of an Internet provider helping spread a promiscuous piece of malicious software has cut off criminals from possibly millions of personal computers under their control.

But it appears to have been short-lived.

Less than a day after the service was unplugged from the Internet, security researchers said Wednesday it apparently had found a way to get back online, and criminals were reconnecting with their machines.

Cisco Systems Inc. said as many as 25 percent of the world's computers infected with the "ZeuS" malware — which is mostly used to steal online banking usernames and passwords — were temporarily unavailable to their controllers because of the takedown.

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