Developing Clouds

Jan 20 2014   3:37PM GMT

Developing Malware in the Cloud

Michelle Greenlee Michelle Greenlee Profile: Michelle Greenlee

It’s official, even the bad guys use legitimate services to host and distribute malware. Security research firm Solutionary discovered Amazon Web Services was among the most-used services. Cloud services in general were proven to be easy to use and easy to scale for legitimate customers and malware authors alike. Cloud services offer a quick path from set up to deploy. Scaling and automated service allocation assist attackers during large-scale campaigns. locked The Solutionary report doesn’t mention neighborhood attacks of same-server sites and resources. If ever you have utilized a shared hosting environment you know it’s quite possible to be affected by other users’ activity.There has been no official word from companies found to have the highest concentration of hosted malware. Could your enterprise app be affected? Companies mentioned in this report are well-known mainstream hosting and domain registration providers who have remained quiet since the report was released. Long-held beliefs about malware hosting and distribution are dispelled in the report while others are upheld. The use of legitimate services is far more common than once believed. Will these revelations change the future of cloud computing? Might we expect higher prices and more stringent identity verification? I would expect to see such measures in a future where even trusted networks contain high concentrations of badware. Developing in the cloud is appealing for so many reasons yet, as the number of complex malware attacks rise, I find myself wishing for the good ol’ days when we were all disconnected from the Internet. Analog communication and payment looks better with each new published attack. Photo credit: mailsparky

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