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Proceedings Paper

Bot armies as threats to network security
Author(s): Sheila B. Banks; Martin R. Stytz
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Paper Abstract

"Botnets", or "bot armies", are large groups of remotely controlled malicious software. Bot armies pose one of the most serious security threats to all networks. Botnets, remotely controlled and operated by botmasters or botherders, can launch massive denial of service attacks, multiple penetration attacks, or any other malicious network activity on a massive scale. While bot army activity has, in the past, been limited to fraud, blackmail, and other forms of criminal activity, their potential for causing large-scale damage to the entire internet; for launching large-scale, coordinated attacks on government computers and networks; and for large-scale, coordinated data gathering from thousands of users and computers on any network has been underestimated. This paper will not discuss how to build bots but the threats they pose. In a "botnet" or "bot army", computers can be used to spread spam, launch denial-of-service attacks against Web sites, conduct fraudulent activities, and prevent authorized network traffic from traversing the network. In this paper we discuss botnets and the technologies that underlie this threat to network and computer security. The first section motivates the need for improved protection against botnets, their technologies, and for further research about botnets. The second contains background information about bot armies and their key underlying technologies. The third section presents a discussion of the types of attacks that botnets can conduct and potential defenses against them. The fourth section contains a summary and suggestions for future research and development.

Paper Details

Date Published: 9 April 2007
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 6570, Data Mining, Intrusion Detection, Information Assurance, and Data Networks Security 2007, 657002 (9 April 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.724246
Show Author Affiliations
Sheila B. Banks, Calculated Insight (United States)
Martin R. Stytz, Institute for Defense Analyses (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6570:
Data Mining, Intrusion Detection, Information Assurance, and Data Networks Security 2007
Belur V. Dasarathy, Editor(s)

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