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Check what is a malware command and control server
A command and control (C&C) server is a computer that sends instructions to digital devices that have been infected with rootkits or other types of malware, such as ransomware. C&C servers can be used to create powerful networks of infected devices capable of performing Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, stealing data, erasing data, or encrypting data to carry out a extortion scheme. In the past, a C&C server was often under the physical control of an attacker and could remain active for several years. Today, C&C servers generally have a short lifespan; They often reside on legitimate cloud services and use automated domain generation algorithms (DGAs) to make it harder for law enforcement and malware hunters to locate them.
A malicious network under the control of a C&C server is called a botnet, and nodes in the network that belong to the botnet are sometimes called zombies. In a traditional botnet, bots are infected with a Trojan horse and use Internet Relay Chat (IRC) to communicate with a central C&C server. These botnets were commonly used to distribute spam or malware and collect misused information such as credit card numbers.
Are all command and control servers malicious?
All command and control servers serve as command centers for threat actors, allowing them to control multiple devices within a target network. A command and control server can help hackers:
Steal sensitive data
One of the main purposes of using a command and control server is to steal highly sensitive data, such as financial credentials. The server serves as a storage for stolen files and records which are then sent to a remote site which is still under attackers control.
close a network
Attackers can also disable a targeted organization using command and control servers. To do this, they shut down the machines that shut down all business operations.
Hackers can also choose to repeatedly reboot malware-infected systems, which can disrupt a business’s operations, through a command-and-control server.
Launch a distributed denial of service attack
All Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks use a command and control server. The server sends a command to all machines under its control to flood a target network with internet traffic, overwhelming a website and making it inaccessible.
What is a command and control server for in a botnet?
A command and control server controls all computers infected with its malicious component, turning them into bots and the entire infrastructure into a botnet. Any insufficiently protected device can become a bot if:
- Malware Infection: It is quite common for hackers to send emails that contain malicious attachments or links.
- When downloaded or clicked, malware automatically installs on the system, turning it into a bot or zombie.
- Exploiting vulnerabilities: Another common way to take control of a computer is to exploit a vulnerability.
- Plugins, plug-ins and unpatched software can be misused to access and control an entire system.
Final Words: What is a Malware Command and Control Server?
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