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Scary Blogspam Automation Tools

As the de facto administrator of the Security Fix blog, I've spent many an hour deleting spammy links left in the comments section -- comments that usually lead back to the same kinds of Web sites you most commonly see advertised in junk e-mail.

Like regular spam, a great deal of "blogspam" is sent with the help of automated tools, such as personal computers that cyber crooks have commandeered with Internet worms that allow the bad guys to control them remotely.

It is rare, however, that we get a glimpse of just how sophisticated this type of automation has become. Consider this longish video (requires Macromedia Flash player) posted at the boldly named "Botmaster.net" Web site. (Botmasters, or "bot herders" as they are sometimes called, are the criminals who control the large, distributed networks of compromised personal computers used to send spam.) The video touts the wonders of a blogspam tool called "xRumer," which sells for $450 (the price includes online tech support).

The authors of this software package claim their product can evade a variety of technologies designed to defeat blogspam, such as requiring users to register an account before posting comments, or passing online "Turing tests" through the use of captchas. The software also boasts the ability to post blogspam comments anonymously using a feature that automatically sends the postings through computers that for one reason or another are configured to act as relays for Web traffic, much the way the long-running spammer tool "Send-Safe" has done for years. Anyway, the feature list is pretty extensive and (if accurate) pretty astounding.

By Brian Krebs  |  January 8, 2007; 3:55 PM ET
Categories:  Fraud , From the Bunker , Latest Warnings  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Microsoft's Achilles' Heel: Office
Next: Microsoft Plugs Ten Security Holes

Comments

Just wondering if your article is an infomercial for Botmaster.net. You certainly have given them a lot of free advertising by not only naming them, but also by coveniently providing links to their website. Does someone at WaPo own all or part of Botmaster.net?

Posted by: KEVIN SCHMIDT, STERLING VA | January 8, 2007 6:25 PM | Report abuse

No, I think Brian is basically proving that the product exists. Far too many other journalists write crappy articles and are nothing but schills for AV companies. I'm glad to see a reporter actually backing up what they say.

Posted by: asdf | January 8, 2007 7:56 PM | Report abuse

You have to know the enemy and the weapons used by the enemy before you can defend against them. I hate spammers. All of them. They are much lower on the food chain than telemarketers.

At least you can get off telemarketing lists.

Posted by: emeryjay | January 8, 2007 8:42 PM | Report abuse

You have to know the enemy and the weapons used by the enemy before you can defend against them. I hate spammers. All of them. They are much lower on the food chain than telemarketers.

At least you can get off telemarketing lists.

Posted by: emeryjay | January 8, 2007 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Don't be naive Kevin. Professional spammers don't read the washington post for ideas on how to control your computer, spam your email or invade your blog... they are already doing it while you are reading or rather, they already done so yesterday when you had intentions to read the paper.

Posted by: dL | January 8, 2007 9:25 PM | Report abuse

"Professional spammers don't read the washington post"
Really? 8)
Guys it's just an web evolution - you build stop-spam software, we buy anti stop-spam software. As a result web makes one more step in their evolution.

PS: Preved webmasterchegi!

Posted by: sp@mmer | January 9, 2007 5:25 AM | Report abuse

Afaik, XRumer is used to spam forums, not blogs. Maybe it can do both, but if you look at the URLs in the video, they are all forums. At the bottom of the GUI, it shows the forum software that can be targeted, phpBB, YaBB, Invision Power Board, etc. I've seen a lot of forum spam that was likely done by XRumer.

That being said, I'm sure there are tools to mass spam blogs too. Here's a discussion about one, and it's been around for 2 1/2 years.

http://www.thebishop.net/geodog/archives/2004/09/18/anatomy_of_comment_spam_script_vendors_emil_kacperski_eugene_blagodarny_and_corporate_helpers.html

Posted by: suzi | January 9, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

"xRumer" is not the best software for spam.

Posted by: ru | January 9, 2007 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Охуеть дайте две

Posted by: arma | January 9, 2007 7:01 PM | Report abuse

Низачот!

Posted by: Васыль | January 9, 2007 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Братва вы о чем ?:)

Posted by: Петрович | January 9, 2007 9:48 PM | Report abuse

You should also take a look at automated spam blogs, I think this is of interest as well.

I found two specific software titles, there are probably dozens more now. They scrape RSS feeds of blogs similar to your keywords, copy the posts whole, and stick them in a blog template of your choosing. Google adsense is added for a revenue stream.

Many of the automated spam tools are now not pumping stock or pr0n links, they are pumping spam blogs. A few of the automated spamming tools are also starting to pull text from blogs, in addition to other sources, in order to fool spam prevention software.

Keep up the great site. It might be helpful to spend one post pointing to a bunch of different security websites, free virus/adware scanners, or security related weblogs, so your readers can find more information.

Posted by: PJ | January 9, 2007 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Коменты рулят о_0

Posted by: o0 | January 10, 2007 2:13 AM | Report abuse

Prevet

Posted by: Medved | January 10, 2007 8:08 AM | Report abuse

посадите разработчика хрумера за его софт пожалуйста, он принес много зла

Posted by: васек | January 10, 2007 8:41 AM | Report abuse

добавил в базу...

Posted by: хех | January 10, 2007 8:57 AM | Report abuse

medved

Posted by: DED | January 10, 2007 1:36 PM | Report abuse

я па руски та плоха пиздеть а по ангиски я ваще не ебу нихуя
сосать им всем

Posted by: халявщик | January 10, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

do you guys work for the sweaty boss full-time? But I push one button in the morning and collect money in the evening. Guess what button do I push?

Posted by: gastrit | January 10, 2007 6:34 PM | Report abuse

It's just an Internet evolution. :)

xRumer not a best soft.

Posted by: Vitalius | January 11, 2007 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Не позорили бы страну со своими "преведами" и "низачОтами".
Идиоты.

Posted by: 4esnok | January 11, 2007 4:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm using XRumer with Door It! Result... See in Top-10

Posted by: Goodkat | January 12, 2007 7:24 AM | Report abuse

Ну надо же отметится так?

Posted by: Anonim | January 12, 2007 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Brian Krebs - мудаг.

Posted by: матароллер | January 13, 2007 6:42 PM | Report abuse

I'm a Happy XRumer user :)

Posted by: Aaz | January 14, 2007 12:31 PM | Report abuse

>>I'm using XRumer with Door It! Result... See in Top-10
What is Door It? I'm using "VIP" and "Spam it Beautiful" - also in Top-10.
God Save Google (and Yahoo and Live also)!!!

Posted by: SuperMoneyMaker | January 15, 2007 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Хрумер рулит :) плохо тему спалили на таком уровне

Posted by: Василёк | January 15, 2007 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Да лана. Все будет хорошо :)

Posted by: Петр | January 15, 2007 11:11 PM | Report abuse

You promote Soft For Spam ! Thx you ! I`m buy this too )))
Да да да ! Вы очень умно поступаете так Держать !

Превед Медведъ ...

Posted by: BLA | January 16, 2007 1:37 AM | Report abuse

Кайфф - ф сотке, найдёццо место на пидистале?

Posted by: Galya z bazara | January 16, 2007 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Good bless Google!
My cool soft is not desktop application like XRumer. Java it`s da reel language for server-side spam tools. I promise I`ll finish spamming when PayPal will begin to receive payment in/out Moldavia&Russia. have it in mind.

Posted by: Diz-Zaebiz | January 16, 2007 1:35 PM | Report abuse

We are russian mafia.

А я лью туда, где топа нет. Вот дерьмо.

P.S. Sit, relax and enjoy.

Posted by: russian mafia | January 16, 2007 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Ржунимагу.

Posted by: Бугага | January 17, 2007 2:54 PM | Report abuse

был тут

Posted by: I'am | January 20, 2007 9:07 AM | Report abuse

My God.

Spam advertising is the lowest thing that mankind has invented. I'm recoiling in disgust at the thought that a couple of people here actually use that sick little program. If I ever had faith in humanity, I've lost it now.

Posted by: person | January 20, 2007 8:29 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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