Cybercrime is going upscale. Criminals are not just putting together bigger botnets--more than a million computers in some cases--they are also adopting the principles of modern marketing to get their products onto your users' computers. This has implications that will be coming soon to thousands of mailboxes near you. At the center of all this activity are not spammers or phishers, who increasingly outsource the delivery of their e-mail campaigns, but professional botnet herders, most of whom rent out their networks of infected machines through an elaborate underground marketplace.
Where botnets were once more or less a sideline for spammers and phishers, they are now a full-time, tightly focused and highly competitive business. Like any other businesspeople, these professional herders concentrate on improving their products by delivering better service to their customers. Better service, in this case, is defined as slashing through the defenses of even more computers even faster. These new herders are a lot more agile than those who preceded them. They have discovered that mass, velocity and agility are the keys to this new environment.
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