Go Daddy’s hosting customers are under attack again, and this time it looks like it’s more serious.
Go Daddy has acknowledged the attacks, blaming outdated WordPress installations and weak FTP passwords, and has put up a page with instructions for cleaning the infection.
Last week, I was told that the first round of attacks was very limited. Today, the attackers seem to have stepped it up a notch.
As a result, Go Daddy could find itself in a similar situation to Network Solutions, which had a couple of thousand customer sites hacked a few weeks back.
The attacks appear to be linked to a well-known crime gang with a Chinese connection.
This domain was registered with BizCN.com, an ICANN-accredited Chinese registrar, but its name servers appear to have been created purely for the attack.
The registrant’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. This connects the attack to the “Kneber” botnet, a successful criminal enterprise that has been operating since at least December 2009.
A Netwitness study revealed the network comprised at least 74,000 hacked computers, and that the bulk of Kneber’s command and control infrastructure is based in China.
Since Kneber is known to be operated by a financially motivated gang, and it’s by no means certain that they’re Chinese, it’s probably inaccurate to suggest there’s something political going on.
However, I will note that Go Daddy was quite vocal about its withdrawal from the .cn Chinese domain name registration market.
Network Solutions, while it was quieter, also stopped selling .cn domains around the same time as the Chinese government started enforcing strict registrant ID rules last December.