Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The future of hacking

I was reading a piece this morning on CNET about the Storm BotNet, a vast array of computers that, unbeknownst to their owners, have been quietly taken over for use in acts of cyber-terrorism, cyber-vandalism, and various other cyber-otherisms.

Over the last few years, as the number of little programs running on my PC has climbed inexorably upwards, and as the behaviour of various pieces of technology have clashed, the performance of my machine has been, at times, flaky. In the early days of botnets, mass-distributed viruses, trojan horses and the rest of that paraphernalia, you could tell when your machine was "infected" because the performance usually suffered. That's no longer necessarily the case, especially when the people who control the botnet don't want you to realise that your computer has been co-opted onto it.

Now that serious, well-organised, well-funded criminals are involved, I was entertaining the thought that in the future, the well-structured botnet program might do everything it can to improve your system's performance - secretly downloading bits of software to analyse and adjust the internals. That way, you might not mind being part of a botnet so much, because in return, you get a machine that's more reliable, without having to spend hours and hours running diagnostics and patching things up yourself.

Sorry. Bit geeky. Happens sometimes.


Tickersoid said...

Should I say, 'Yeay' or 'OMG'?

Qenny said...

I think OMG might be more appropriate. And then start downloading spyware onto your hardware. :)