Cyberthreats are no longer a thing of the future. They are here, happening now and targeting even the most unsuspecting internet users. It is no longer business owners and banks that must be diligent in their security to protect themselves from hackers, but anyone with a computer and an online connection.
In 2017 the Mirai Okiru Botnet was released by a group of cyber criminals into the public, effecting hundreds of thousands of computers. The original virus, was created to infiltrate CPU systems running x86, Motorola 6800 and Power PC. The botnet itself did damage with spam dumps, virus planting and malware attacks.
Since the Mirai Okiru Botnet was originally discovered, the creators have been captured and jailed, but the different variants of the same source code are still out there infecting different systems with the source codes still active.
The latest attacks are now targeting a much larger network. ARC processors account for 70% of LINUX operating systems in a variety of several types of devices. ARC or “Argonaut Rise Core” systems can be found in digital cameras, utility meters, flash drives and smart tv’s.
Almost all modern households now use at least one of these types of devices on a regular basis which can potentially make this new attack the largest ever seen and even more damaging than the original Mirai Okiru Botnet. It is no longer large institutions that are the target but just the average user.
What is a Botnet?
Botnet is a short form for the combination of the words “Robot” and “Network”. A Botnet is simply an enormous collection of computers and devices that hackers working for large cyber criminal organizations have been compiled and have remote control over as a group.
Once an ARC processor is under the control of the Botnet group it is no longer under its own control or the users control. The purpose of using this system is to collect as much processing power into groups allowing the cyber criminals to have a larger effect when sending out malware, stealing data or injecting viruses.
A Botnet download can launch DDoS attacks on a large scale without the devices user or owner even being aware of the activity. This allows the cyber criminals to largely work undetected. In DDoS attacks the botnet group will try to hit a targets website with so much spam or malware that it will cause that website to overload and crash.
Botnet Attack Prevention
- Install top of the line Anti Virus Software
- Make sure to install firewalls in all your systems for extra protection
- Update all apps and software on a regular basis
- Be wary of unknown email or suspicious links
- Install same extra security precautions onto your cell phone
With sophisticated criminal organizations such as the creators of the original Mirai Okiru Botnet, it is difficult for the average user to know that they may already be a victim. With the source code working behind the scenes in the ARC processors, most devices will give no obvious indications or warnings that there is even a problem.
How to Check Your Devices for Botnets
- Beware of a suddenly slower internet connection speed than you normally have access to
- Watch for the fan on your computer starting up when it is not in use or is idle
- Review your internet provider billing for any unusual spikes in usage
- If your browser closes unexpectedly on a regular basis
- The amount of time that your computer usually needs for start up or shut down is extended
These are all the basic signs that there may be a problem. Each of these signs on their own could mean any number of regular issues, but having many of these problems present could be a botnet infection in your ARC processor.
Your first move should be to do a full review of your Task Manager in your system or on your device. If there is any activity that seems strange or wasn’t done by you then you may be an unsuspecting host to a botnet.
Unfortunately, with the level of technology and amount of affected coding that happens when a botnet gets into your computer, the only solution is complete and total wipe. This is one of many reasons why making regular back ups on your system and for your files is so important. You will need to erase it completely and re install the full operating system to ensure that the botnet is out of your device.