04:46 PM
Connect Directly

Summer's Zotob Attack Cost Each Company $100K To Clean Up

Around 13% of the enterprises polled reported that they experienced at least some negative impact from Zotob, which hit in August, a security company says.

The August attack of the Zotob bot worm was milder than other major events, but still cost victims an average of nearly $100,000 to clean up, a security company said Wednesday.

Virginia-based Cybertrust surveyed 700 enterprises on the impact of Zotob, a bot worm that exploited a vulnerability in Windows 2000 during August, 2005. Although Zotob wasn't as widespread as other notable malware, such as Sasser, MSBlast, or Slammer, it raised a ruckus in media companies and briefly slowed overall Internet traffic.

"Sasser had more impact," said Russ Cooper, Cybertrust's senior information security analyst. "Compared to earlier worm outbreaks, Zotob impacted significantly fewer organizations."

About 13 percent of the enterprises polled reported that they experienced at least some negative impact from Zotob, with a bit less than half of that, just 6 percent, classifying the damage as moderate or major, meaning that they suffered more than $10,000 in costs and had one or more business-critical systems affected.

By comparison, 2003's MSBlast rang in with five times the number of organizations in the moderate-to-major category. In 2004, nearly half of the companies surveyed (49 percent) by Cybertrust about Sasser said that they'd been affected to some degree, nearly four times the rate of Zotob.

"This worm and its impact complements Cybertrust’s intelligence that illustrates the goal of hackers today is no longer widespread system shutdown, but rather more frequent, smaller attacks with specific targets powered by a drive for financial and information gain,” said Cooper.

Most security experts have been talking up that trend for some time, but Cybertrust's report is one of the first to put data on the prediction.

1 of 2
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
IT's Reputation: What the Data Says
InformationWeek's IT Perception Survey seeks to quantify how IT thinks it's doing versus how the business really views IT's performance in delivering services - and, more important, powering innovation. Our results suggest IT leaders should worry less about whether they're getting enough resources and more about the relationships they have with business unit peers.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Must Reads Oct. 21, 2014
InformationWeek's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of digital strategy. Learn why you should learn to embrace DevOps, how to avoid roadblocks for digital projects, what the five steps to API management are, and more.
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
A roundup of the top stories and trends on
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.