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  • Google won a lawsuit against the creators of the Glupteba botnet


    Google has won a lawsuit against two Russian citizens who created the Glupteba botnet. The company announced this on its blog last week.

    The District Court for the Southern District of New York imposed punitive damages on the defendants and their lawyers who are in the United States. The defendants were also asked to pay Google's legal costs. The defendants' motion to sanction Google was denied. The size of the sanctions is not reported.

    In 2021, Google destroyed the Glubteba malware infrastructure and sued Dmitry Starovikov and Alexander Filippov, who are said to have been involved in the creation of the botnet. Google indicated that Glupteba operators have resumed operations using specialized platforms and IoT devices that are not managed by Google. According to the company, it was able to reduce the number of infected hosts by 78%.

    The defendants, along with 15 others, were also accused of using malware to create a hacked network of cryptocurrency mining devices, collect victims' personal and financial data, and post disruptive advertising.

    Gluteba differs from other botnets in that it uses blockchains as a command and control (C&C) server to resist disruption. According to Google, the botnet has infected more than a million Windows computers around the world. According to the court order, Glupteba tells infected computers to look up the addresses of their C&C servers by referring to the transactions of certain accounts on the Bitcoin blockchain.

    Starovikov and Filippov, who claim to have worked as software engineers for Valtron LLC, were charged with attempting to deliberately mislead the court, as well as trying to deprive Google of available information.

    The defendants asked Google for $1 million each, in addition to $110,000 attorney fees, in exchange for providing private keys to bitcoin wallets linked to the Glupteba botnet. However, Google rejected the offer, calling it "extortionate," and reported it to law enforcement. The defendants then stated in court that "they did not have access to the private keys, and the Bitcoin wallet addresses belonged to the CEO of Valtron."

    "It is now clear that the defendants were brought to trial not to defend themselves in good faith against Google's claims, but with the intent to abuse the court system and disclosure rules to profit from Google," District Judge Denise L. Cote said in a statement.
    Author DeepWeb
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