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Extensive Star Wars botnet discovered on Twitter

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“A Twitter bot is a user on Twitter with automated functions which therefore requires little or no human input,” as the researchers explain in their paper out. “A botnet is a group of bots created and controlled by the so-called botmaster. Some bots have benign purposes, such as generating an automated tweet when a new article on a news website. “But sometimes the creators of bots have other intentions. “As spam spread, manipulating public opinion or selling bots and fake followers.”

quote

Extensive Star Wars botnet discovered on Twitter
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The researchers discovered the botnet when they realized the location of one percent of all Twitter users.And so they came across thousands of accounts that were active from uninhabited places: oceans and deserts for example. It pointed out that behind these accounts were not people. The researchers zoomed down the accounts by studying the tweets. Most of the tweets appeared to be random quotes from the Star Wars books. “Many quotes began or ended with an incomplete word and some quotes had a hashtag that was placed anywhere. An example: “Luke’s answer was to put on an extra burst of speed. There were only at yards #separating them now. If he could convert “This quote comes from the book” Star Wars: Choices of One ‘. “We have quotes from Star Wars definitely eleven books found.”

WHAT IS A BOT? 

Extensive Star Wars botnet discovered on Twitter
Google Image

“A Twitter bot is a user on Twitter with automated functions which therefore requires little or no human input,” as the researchers explain in their paper out. “A botnet is a group of bots created and controlled by the so-called botmaster. Some bots have benign purposes, such as generating an automated tweet when a new article on a news website. “But sometimes the creators of bots have other intentions. “As spam spread, manipulating public opinion or selling bots and fake followers.”

Similarities

Extensive Star Wars botnet discovered on Twitter
Google Image

But the accounts had more in common than the quotes. So each bone had during ‘his life’ sent less than eleven tweets. In addition, each bone had fewer than ten followers and chose every bone Twitter for Windows Phone “as the source of his tweets. In addition, the bots other Twitter users retweet not. They called no other Twitter users.

More than 350,000 bots
Initially, the researchers were arrested in 3244 Star Wars bots. But it seemed likely that there were more.The researchers were, therefore, consider whether there are more Twitter users were fulfilled all the features of the Star Wars bots. She stumbled as no less than 356 957 Star Wars bots.

orchestrated
All bots were created in 2013. The final saw on July 14, 2013, was born. With the birth of the latter bone suddenly fell all bots – that produced more than 150,000 tweets per day – quiet. And since that day, the crash no longer make them heard. It suggests to the researchers that the impact “orchestrated and controlled by a botmaster”.

“IT IS QUITE POSSIBLE THAT THE BOTMASTER STILL ABLE TO GET ALL 350,000 STAR WARS BOTS AT A TIME TO ACTIVATE IT PLEASES”

Discrete
That this vast network of bots is long gone unnoticed, is easily explained, as the researchers write. For instance, the bots are designed not to be noticed. She tweeted a few times and just tweeted quotes from books, so the tweets closely resemble real human voice. In addition, the bots have very ordinary profiles: some bots even have a profile picture.

Dangerous?
The big question is whether this huge botnet is dangerous. It could say the researchers. “It is quite possible that the botmaster still able to get all 350,000 Star Wars bots at a time to enable him to fit. When that happens, the impact can be numerous types of threats. “They can make a particular topic trending topic, go spamming, influence public opinion, and so on. “The fact that the Star Wars botnet much impact does allows a serious threat, perhaps even a more serious threat than we have ever seen.” But, the researchers write in their paper, it may just be that the bots joke created and their maker she’s already forgotten.

What the survey shows, in any event, is that large networks bots can still escape detection. Also, argue the researchers based their study on more research into the damage that can wreak botnets. Especially since the Star Wars botnet does not stand alone. “Inspired by the qualities of the Star Wars bots we have recently discovered another botnet with more than 500,000 bots.”

 

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