Inside the Pay-Per-Install Malware Economy

Secureworks researcher Kevin Stevens has written a must-read article on the Pay-Per-Install business model (PPI) that is used primarily to spread spyware and malware. 
The article discusses the way the affiliate system works, with layers of files and software programs that power the installation of malware on hijacked Windows computers.

Malware Flea Market Pays Hackers to Hijack PCs

Among a slew of online cybercrime forums, Pay-Per-Install.org stands out as a malware flea market where shadowy pushers of Trojan downloaders and tools for evading detection are bargaining with thousands of would-be “affiliates” willing to compromise victims’ computers globally and get paid for it.
Top dollar goes to anyone who can compromise computers in the United States. Those who do the dirty work are paid $140 for every 1,000 U.S. computers they seed with bits of malware, to ready these victims’ computers for other types of criminal assaults such as stealing financial data, sending spam or pushing fake antivirus software.  Read the full story [Network World/Ellen Messmer]

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