Telia Sonera unearths major botnet ring

Swedish carrier TeliaSonera and cyber crime experts are investigating a Latvian-based operation that has emerged as one of the biggest hubs for online fraud.

According to the Financial Times, TeliaSonera cut off the company operating as Real Host which had rented a range of IP addresses from ISP Junik.

Real Host servers were discovered to be the link to a “botnet” ring called Zeus which controls personal computers remotely.

In the US alone Zeus has captured 3.6 million computers, according to security firm Damballa. Zeus also has links to Russian cyber crime outfit Rock Phish, which is blamed for half of the world's phishing attacks on credit cards and banking information.

IT security analysts say that the de-centralized nature of the criminal activities and the ability to create a Zeus network can be easily done via underground online markets. However, it is difficult to ascertain how much of Zeus the Real Host servers controlled.