Alleged Mariposa Botmaster in Court

One of the men authorities allege to have been behind the massive–and now dead–Mariposa botnet, has gone on trial in Slovenia, more than two years after the initial arrests and takedown of the network. 

One of the men authorities allege to have been behind the massive–and now dead–Mariposa botnet, has gone on trial in Slovenia, more than two years after the initial arrests and takedown of the network. 

Mariposa was one of the first handful of botnets that authorities and security researchers worked together to dismantle. The network appeared on the scene in early 2009 and researchers and law enforcement officials took notice. A working group was formed and researchers began looking at ways to disrupt the botnet’s operation while law enforcement agencies searched for ways to identify the people behind it.

By the end of the year, researchers in the working group had gathered enough information to take a shot at bringing down Mariposa. In December 2009 researchers announced that they had taken down the botnet after monitoring the communications among the operators and between the infected machines and the command-and-control servers for some time. Soon after, authorities in Spain arrested three suspects they said were involved in running Mariposa, which at one time had approximately 12.5 million machines under its control.

In the summer of 2010, officials in Slovenia arrested Matjaz Skorjanc, whom they allege is the man who created the bot software and network and then sold it to other attackers for their own use. Skorjanc on Tuesday reportedly appeared in court in Slovenia for the beginning of his trial, according to TechWeek Europe. The three suspects arrested in Spain have yet to stand trial.


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