Mar 08 2008
The highest earnings come from selling loopholes. This isn’t something the normal programmer can do, it takes a high-level of skill to locate a loopholes on a large company’s website. According to hacker Hu, these loopholes can be used to carry out attacks on corporations and therefore, sell for several tens of thousands of YUAN, to several hundred thousand YUAN.
Not only that, hackers can receive requests to design viruses and the anti-viruses. Hackers can also put together groups of controlled computers to launch large-scale attacks. These groups of computers are called botnets in hacker groups.
Monitored data from CNCERT shows that China has five botnets that exceed over 100,000 slave computers and one or two of those have 300,000 slave computers. These slave networks can be leased and earn the hackers millions of YUAN a year. According to CNCERT, this section of the underground industry is exceeding 238 million YUAN a year and causing losses of over 7.6 billion YUAN.
Hacker Hu said that after the virus maker sells the virus, the virus’ journey
has just begun. For example, after a “Gun Buyer” purchases a virus to steal virtual property, they will hire a botnet to spread the virus. The disseminated virus can steal online game players money and weapons and send the stolen goods to a mailbox.
The botnet is the core for disseminating viruses but there is a fairly easy method to accomplish this. Hacker Hu smiles, “You get up early, go to the internet bar and capture the 30 computers there with a virus and go home and wait for the money.” The programmer or the person owning the botnet, can earn five FEN to five JIAO for every infected computer. The hacker industry has evolved to the point where there are very distinct divisions of labor. Each gang usually has ten or more people, some who spread the virus, some who steal virtual currency and some who launder the money.
NOTE: Five FEN is worth about .6 cents and five JIAO about 6 cents.
To launder virtual items, a member of the gang will open a lot of gamer accounts and a stolen article will be passed around among these different accounts and then sold. The game company doesn’t know which accounts are real players and which are sellers. Hacker Hu says that the virtual money is then sold at wholesale through a down-line surrogate.
In addition, hackers design other Trojans for sale that are mass produced and burned onto. Based on the exclusive nature or functionality of the Trojan, the price can be from tens of YUAN to over 1,000 YUAN. Furthermore, some hacker organizations provide malicious advertising plug-in services. These plug-ins causes a users computer to pop up a special window, every 1,000 times the window pop ups earns 12 YUAN. Currently, there are at least 50 malicious advertising agencies within the country (China). CNCERT estimates that the annual production of malicious advertising amounts to 108 million YUAN.
Thus ends the saga of Chinese hacker HU!