The individual, or people, behind the BrickerBot malware attacks have decided to hang up their mouse and keyboard after claiming to have locked more than 10 million supposedly unsecure Internet of Things devices.
Bleeping Computer reported that the person, or group, known as The Doctor or The Janitor that created the malware in response to the Mirai botnet attack told the news site in an email that it has decided to halt operations because it was having a “crying wolf” affect.
“I believe that the project has been a technical success, but I am now starting to worry that it is also having a deleterious effect on the public’s perception of the overall IoT threat. Researchers keep issuing high profile warnings about genuinely dangerous new botnets, and a few weeks or even days later they are all but gone. Sooner or later people are going to start questioning the credibility of the research and the seriousness of the situation,” The Doctor told Bleeping Computer.
BrickerBot was first reported by Radware in April 2017 when the company saw the denial of service malware appearing in its honeypots near the end of March. The malware’s MO had it searching for open Telnet ports and then brute forcing its way into the device, in a manner similar to Mirai. It then corrupts the targets storage destroying it, concluding what is called a Permanent Denial of Service (PDOS) attack.
The Doctor told Bleeping Computer in an interview earlier this year that BrickerBot was designed as a way to identify and remove unsecure devices from the internet in the hope that such an action would limit the amount of damage being done by Mirai-style attacks. The primary Mirai attack started on October 21, 2016.