Your computer or router looks innocent enough. But it could be taking part in international crime without your knowledge.
That’s if it is being used in a botnet, or a collection of computers that have had malicious software installed on them that allows someone to direct them as a group from afar. Security experts say that botnets are one of the many dangers that are posed to computers and their owners – and the opportunities to use them are growing all the time.
The problem of botnets was highlighted this week when multiple law enforcement agencies announced they had shut down the Andromeda botnet. That constellation of computers, spread all around the world, were being collectively controlled and put to work doing criminal tasks for their masters.
The shutdown brings an end to one of the most prevalent, damaging botnets. But it highlights the sinister behaviour of such tools –