Botnet services for hire: $8.94 an hour

A VeriSign investigation underscores how little money or technical expertise is needed to carry out botnet attacks.

Matthew Broersma Special to CNET News

Botnets are available for hire for as little as $8.94 an hour, underscoring how little financial muscle or technical expertise is needed to carry out attacks, according to VeriSign's cybersecurity intelligence arm.

VeriSign said Monday that it carried out an online investigation into 25 botnet operators in February, targeting botnet services advertised on three Web forums. The study found that hourly botnet rental pricing started at $8.94, while the average price for a 24-hour rental was $67.20.

The services advertised a number of attack vectors, including ICMP, SYN, UDP, HTTP, HTTPS, and Data. The botnet operators plied their wares via the same techniques as legitimate businesses, such as via forums and banner ads. One botnet operator offered a pricing structure for taking down sites that have anti-attack measures installed.

Read more of "Botnet price for hourly hire on par with cost of two pints" at ZDNet UK.