Verizon’s annual Data Breach Investigations Report is scheduled to come out soon, but the team released an incident involving a college campus being hit by an internet of things (IoT) botnet — a botnet that took control of 5,000 systems.
The Verizon RISK Team performs cyber investigations for hundreds of commercial enterprises and government agencies annually. In 2015, Verizon's team was retained to investigate more than 500 cybersecurity incidents occurring in over 40 countries. (See last year's cases.) As a sneak peek of its latest report, Verizon released a case of an unnamed university attacked by a botnet.
Senior members of the university’s help desk had been receiving an increasing number of complaints from students across campus about slow or inaccessible network connectivity. Even with limited access, the help desk had found a number of concerns. The name servers, responsible for Domain Name Service (DNS) lookups, were producing high-volume alerts and showed an abnormal number of sub-domains related to seafood, according to the Verizon report.