Computer Crime Research Center


Computer crimes: DDoS ordered

Date: June 11, 2004
Source: Computer Crime Research Center
By: Dmitri Kramarenko

A curious offer has recently appeared on the Russian Internet. Cyber criminals offer to block access to an 'ordered' website only for $150 per day. Such attacks are not rare, but experts suspect that this offer to 'kill' a website may conceal a usual scam.

"We are glad to propose you a quality service of pulling websites, we can ball up any website with our DDoS attack," an ad e-mail with such offer was received by a correspondent of a Russian new agency.

According to a pricelist, a six-hour downtime will cost $60, 24 hours - $150, by prepayment. "I can pull any website, say Microsoft", a hacker boasted to the correspondent, introduced as a potential client. "But someone is gonna kick my ass for that, it will be enough," he added. Therein, DoZ agreed to attack for not less than $80,000 a week. For comparison, he asked a lot less to attack , an official website of Russian President Vladimir Putin -- $2,000 a week, and then even lowered the price to $1,000.

DoZ even provided contacts of his clients who agreed to recommend him.

"Yes he will cope, I am currently working with him", his client rejoices. " , a project of my competitors has been down for already a month." "It is a pity to pay such $4000 at once, but at the same time you have no competitors," another customer agrees.

A police officer, who wanted to remain unnamed, believes that in this case we may speak about a usual scam. "One person can get tens of nicknames in the Net. It's all rubbish [offer to DDoS attack by prepayment], although there is always an idiot who will believe and pay," he says. He added that nobody has ever been prosecuted for pure DDoS attacks in Russia. Criminals are, though, often nabbed for related with DDoS attacks extortion.

"There are many people who can DDoS attack, although they surely it's above their strength to 'pull Microsoft'," Igor Vlasov, ArtBureau's system architect regards. "They have no special liking of the background, although there are men of principle who attack porn sites purely." He added that anyone can find a DDoS attack executors who can block a badly protected website for $80 per day. According to Vlasov, a normal system administrator will need about 5 hours to cope with such cyber attack.

"A DDoS attack on root DNS Internet servers has become the most famous (a domain name is first purchased through a domain register, at the time you sign up for the domain, you're asked to submit your personal information, and information on 2 or more Name Servers; this information is stored on a 'root DNS server'; when someone searches for your domain on the web or using any other service that needs to get hold of details on your domain, these root servers are queried - CCRC) in November 2002," Alexander Gostev, an analyst for Kaspersky Antivirus Labs, recalls. "Then load on servers increased in dozens of times and processing of usual requests was extremely slowed or even stopped."

Last years DDoS attacks seriously trouble many websites. "The main damage to companies brought by cyber attacks lies not only in site's downtime, but in damage to reputation of the company," Christopher , KPMG's Information Risks Management Department Chief says. According to his words, clients of the company disappointed by inaccessibility of its website may turn to competitors.

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