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The Next Cyber Hurricane Is Coming And It’ll Take Down The Internet

Mac Slavo
October 24th, 2017
Comments (33)
Read by 6,943 people

botnet mit bot herder 3D

Last year, the botnet Mirai caused a massive distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack in October, knocking popular websites off the internet for millions of users. Right now, the next cyber hurricane is on the way, and it could take down the entire internet.

According to ZD Net, the botnet, dubbed “Reaper” by researchers at Netlab 360, is appearing on the radar of security researchers.  A little over a month ago, the researchers detected the sizable botnet of infected Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Now, just weeks later, it’s on track to become one of the largest botnets recorded in recent years.

The botnet is said to have ensnared almost two million Internet-connected webcams, security cameras, and digital video recorders (DVRs) in the past month, says Check Point, which also published research, putting its growth at a far faster pace than Mirai.

Mirai was “beautifully simple,” said Ken Munro, a consultant at UK-based security firm Pen Test Partners. The malware would scan the internet and infect connected devices with default usernames and passwords, which either weren’t or couldn’t be changed by the owner. The collective bandwidth from the huge number of “zombie devices” that were infected and enslaved was directed at Dyn, an internet infrastructure company, which overloaded the company’s systems and prevented millions from accessing popular websites.

Reaper, on the other hand, is much more complex. It’s “what Mirai could easily have been,” said Munro. It takes a slightly different, more advanced approach by quietly targeting and exploiting known vulnerabilities in devices and injecting its malicious code. This effectively hijacks the device for whenever the botnet controller is ready to issue their commands. Each time a device is infected, the device spreads the malware to other vulnerable devices just like a worm.

Mirai was much more aggressive too. It ran each device against a list of known usernames and passwords, but Reaper, by comparison,  is “not very aggressive,” said Netlab. By targeting a known vulnerability, the botnet can swiftly take control of a device without raising any alarms. “One of the reasons Mirai didn’t achieve its full potential is that the compromise didn’t persist beyond a reboot,” said Munro. “Hence, multiple botnet herders were competing for control of the compromised DVRs that comprised it, so the huge botnet it could have been was never built,” he added.

Not only has the botnet gained substantially in size in the past month, it’s capability is also expanding. New exploits have been added to the botnet’s arsenal regularly in recent days, said Netlab. Check Point said 33 devices are vulnerable to attack so far. Researchers have also noted that several known, easy-to-exploit vulnerabilities have not been added to the botnet, raising questions about why some exploits have been added and not others.

But what’s thrown researchers for a loop is that nobody can figure out what the botnet is for.

While the Mirai botnet was a point-and-shoot botnet that could be used to hose systems with vast amounts of bandwidth, Reaper can be used to run complex attack scripts on infected devices. Reaper’s command and control infrastructure is also growing in size, accommodating more infected devices by the day. Netlab said 10,000 bots were under the wing of just one command and control server.

So far, there haven’t been any signs of DDoS attacks yet. The botnet creator (“it appears that one group or individual has control of most of it,” said Munro), is focusing on building the botnet’s size. As it stands, Reaper’s size today could be capable of “creating significantly more DDoS traffic than Mirai,” said Munro. –ZD Net

A breakdown of the Reaper botnet shows that the malware that infects devices allows the botnet owner to remotely execute code on each device, said Alan Woodward, a professor at the University of Surrey. But because each device has such little individual computational power, the code running on each device would have to be harnessed collectively for a larger, coordinated computing task, he said. That could be anything from a DDoS on an internet target, to a much larger kind of attack.

“The aggregation of large numbers of the same Internet of Things (IoT) device leads to systemic issues,” said Munro. “When it’s one device affecting one home, it’s irritating for the consumer, but when it’s a million devices, deeper problems arise. For example, any IoT device that switches a lot of electrical power gives rise to potential to affect the electricity grid. Whether it’s a smart kettle, a smart thermostat switching your air conditioning or solar panels — all switch power,” he said. “Trigger a million devices that switch 3kW concurrently and the power grid fails.”

Researchers keep expecting the botnet to pounce, but it hasn’t yet. What happens next is anybody’s guess.

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Author: Mac Slavo
Views: Read by 6,943 people
Date: October 24th, 2017

Copyright Information: Copyright SHTFplan and Mac Slavo. This content may be freely reproduced in full or in part in digital form with full attribution to the author and a link to Please contact us for permission to reproduce this content in other media formats.


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  1. Watchdog says:

    Prepare for a false flag. Taking the grid down along with the banks is the ultimate goal since they can’t sustain it any longer.

    Make sure you have these:
    God, Guns, Gold, Grub.

  2. TEST says:

    Internet of Things (IoT). I’m a former Novell CNE, and still work in tech, so I’m not a Luddite, but yep…. I need my thermostat controlled by my iPhone because I’m too lazy to walk over and turn my thermostat up, or too self absorbed to feel a chill for two minutes when I walk in the house and wait for the room to heat up. Y’know…. it’s probably -40F in the house, and I’m suffering from frostbite.

  3. Heartless says:

    Working with Kali of late myself… and most all this article talks about is not only true – but already obsolete. What’s coming, if those who wish to do so, could be even better (or worse, depending on your viewpoint).

  4. James says:

    I guess trying to lead a simple life has a lot of advantages. God Bless, James

  5. Texas-4570 says:

    Yes, it does, who knows where this could go or what it’s capable of or what the end game is.

  6. TEST says:

    A bit of a digression, but thinking of feral people running the streets got me to thinking about Chicago, and then this “take knee” idiocy in the NFL. i\

    If black lives matter – and they do – why don’t they matter to the FATHERS who sire these kids, then abandon them to run the streets. Given that the greatest predictor of social pathology is the lack of fathers, THAT alone would stop all the issues they complain about. You want to take a knee? Try doing it at the ALTER while you are marrying the mother of your kids. That would do a million times more than all the politically correct grandstanding in the world.

    • Genius says:

      Maybe because the fathers are like the kids. Unemployable, stupid, lazy,thugs. The mothers are fat and stupid sassy assed imbiciles too. Not the worlds best breeding stock if ya know what I mean.

      • Frank Thoughts says:

        The psychology is definitely not helpful. The women are taught to bitch and complain and demand because they are black and beautiful. Lacking a mirror showing their true condition – fat – they over-rate their purchase in the marketplace of pussy. Black dudes know this and that’s why they only use these women as convenient penis parking lots.

        Most black dudes want to score either a white chick or an Asian chick. They know any babies with the black women will be taken care of by the welfare system so it just isn’t an issue. If they want a baby with a white or Asian woman they have to work 3 or 4 times harder and pay much more (look at Tiger Woods’ hot Swedish ex). Those are just the market prices on the Pussy Stock Exchange.

    • Plan twice, prep once says:

      I read an interesting statistic once that correlated parenting situations.
      1. Children raised in a two parent stable family had the lowest rate of police interactions due to criminal behavior.
      2. Children raised in a single parent household where one spouse died were only about one or two percentage points more likely to have criminal legal issues.
      3. Children raised in families where a divorce occurs were fully twice as likely to have criminal legal issues.
      The psychological study went deeper trying to grade the divorces on a one to ten scale where 1 was a divorce where the couple were amicable and continued a business like relationship whose goal was to bennifit the children, all the way to a ten where the divorce was an ugly never ending hate fest that exploited the children to use them as weapons in the continuing personal war. The results were exactly as expected.

      • Genius says:

        I fit #3 at about a 5. I have always been rebelious and anti-authority. I grew out of the criminal shit in late teens. Being from mostly German heritage I was smart enough to teach myself and learn from others many things that have benefited me a lot. I continue to do the same and always will. Compared to the idiots I am surrounded by, I AM a GENIUS lol. Life deals you your hand, make the best of it and don’t be a fookin whiny lil beech! By the way I didn’t learn much of anything from either parent.

        • Genius says:

          And both of them were teachers lol.

          • Genius says:

            Maybe I should have had kids. It would help improve the gene pool. But naaaah, I don’t believe in making anyone suffer through the idiocracy we have here. I am a real humanitarian!

        • mominator says:

          I agree that a 2 parent home is best but my ex was nuts and needed to go. I have had the raising of my two kids and have been very involved in their lives. They had chores, bedtimes and activities and music lessons. One is in college now and the other is not far behind. Both bright, polite and well adjusted. I have been complemented on my children many times. I worked hard to make them who they are. Parenting is a full time job and too many people just feed them, buy them stuff and let them go. Read to them, talk to them, not down to them. If you use words they don’t know explain. Don’t be friends be the parent!

          • babycatcher says:

            Amen! Same boat here, and though I was married to their father for 21 years, he was either gone physically or mentally ( alcoholism). I figured they were better off without him and left after 17 years. We were in a good solid church, two of the three have gone thru college( and paid their own way) and the third is a Navy veteran and in college now. Despite the hardships, they beat the odds.

      • TEST says:

        You are spot on PTPO. The extremely famous article in the Atlantic years ago, Dan Quayle Was Right, documents this. You can read if for free at

        Incredibly important article.

      • awed bawl says:

        The effect that parents have on children is between zero and ten percent.

        The verdict is in- it’s heredity over environment any day.

        The folks with the good child rearing practices also have good genetics.

    • Frank Thoughts says:

      Totally agree: the most abusive people to black people are other black people. I have never seen a Chinese person beat on a black person; but black kids get beat on and killed every day here by other black kids.

      Ask any black person what they feel like when they walk down a street and pass a group of other blacks? If they are honest, they will admit they are scared and would prefer to have middle aged white people around.

    • awed bawl says:


      You mean it’s not genetic?

  7. MikeW says:

    Why can’t we treat these very damaging and very expensive attacks just as we do for any terrorist or other physical attack? Surely our experts or experts from Britain or Israel or wherever can figure out where the attacks are coming from. Then we could alert the home country to take them out by a certain time, get them locked up and seize their assets, or we will. If they’re from China or Russia, give them the same warnings. But since we couldn’t gain entry to take out the cyber-terrorists, we would have to reply with our own attacks until they get the hint.

  8. Whiskey2BeerNback says:

    IF the Internet should go down, guess I’ll be more than ok.

    Still gots a landline, & even an old push button phone.

    I guess that’ll make me king & “in charge”.

  9. Kay123 says:

    Good post! And very true.
    Lack of FAMILY unity is the scourge of the world.
    What makes it worse is the US gov. makes it profitable.

  10. The Deplorable Braveheart says:

    Genius, you said a mouthful there, LOL. I see that shit in my area every day.


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