The massive and long-running Andromeda botnet, also known as Gamarue, has been take down by a collaborative effort between international law enforcement agencies and other stakeholders, according to a Monday announcement by Europol.
The Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), in cooperation with the Luneburg Central Criminal Investigation Inspectorate in Germany, Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre (EC3), the Joint Cybercrime Action Task Force (J-CAT), Eurojust and private-sector partners dismantled the network, which has been associated with 80 malware families and has been detected or blocked on more than a million machines every month over the past six months, on Nov. 29, Europol says.
“This is another example of international law enforcement working together with industry partners to tackle the most significant cyber criminals and the dedicated infrastructure they use to distribute malware on a global scale,” Steven Wilson, the Head of Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre said in a statement. “The clear message is that public-private partnerships can impact these criminals and make the internet safer for all of us.”
The Andromeda/Gamarue malware family was created in September 2011 to steal credentials from and distribute other malware to infected computers, ZDNet reports.
Another international investigation, into the Avalanche international criminal infrastructure which had been used to launch “mass global malware attacks” including Andromeda, concluded


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IBM Cloud wants to make sure that what happens in Germany stays in Germany, at least as far as its European customers’ data is concerned. Starting next month, the cloud provider will institute new security measures at its Frankfurt data center that will restrict access to all data stored in the facility to EU-based IBM employees. These employees will also review, approve, or deny all access by non-EU based employees.
In addition, clients using IBM Cloud’s dedicated environments in Frankfurt will review and approve all non-EU access requests to their content whenever an issue, support or otherwise, requires such access. In those cases, access will be temporary, and the client will be notified when the access is ended. Logs tracking access will be available to the client.
Related: US Will Curb ‘Sneak-and-Peek’ Server Searches Microsoft Sued Over
Over time, the company said, this support model will be expanded to include IBM’s full cloud architecture stack in Frankfurt, taking in infrastructure, AI, data, analytics, DevOps, and more. Beginning in 2018, German users will be offered full encryption — at rest and in-transit — with keys that will remain in possession of the customer.
Reading between the lines, this means that Big Blue has all but locked access to client accounts on Frankfurt servers for everyone outside Europe, including its own employees in the US.
Related: Microsoft CEO Urges Tech to Focus


(Bloomberg View) — If you thought internet ads were annoying, consider this: The websites you visit could now be harnessing your computer to do cryptocurrency mining.
Digital currencies demand a lot of computing power. To complete each block of transactions, computer owners around the world must race to solve an extremely difficult cryptographic puzzle, with the winner getting paid in the relevant cryptocurrency. To increase their chances, such “miners” invest vast amounts in processing capacity — building server farms in far-flung places where electricity is cheap — and are always on the lookout for inexpensive ways to get more.
Website publishers, for their part, are constantly seeking new ways to generate revenue. Subscriptions can be a hard sell. Ads are less than ideal: They often repel users, they can be hijacked by bots and Russians, and big players such as Google typically take a cut of the revenue. So some are resorting to an untapped resource: selling miners access to the computing power of the people who visit their sites.
Here’s how it works. Let’s say you go to a site devoted to cat pictures. When your web browser loads the first page, it also initiates a script that instructs your computer’s processor to do calculations for a cryptocurrency miner, who could be located in Germany or just about anywhere. You might notice nothing more than a slightly slower computer and a slightly higher electricity bill. The miner


At the ePages Commerce Summit in Hamburg, Germany this week, 1&1 Internet launched a new range of e-commerce shop packages powered by ePages cloud software.
The new 1&1 shop range is based on ePages Now, cloud-based software designed for rapid and easy deployment, shop functionality, and responsive websites.
Recent numbers from Statista indicate that SMB retailers account for a significant portion of the growth in online shopping revenues, set to reach $4.5 trillion by 2021. 1&1 has millions of SMB customers that will benefit from its new e-commerce offerings, according to the company.
With ePages Now, users can select a layout and customize it with a drag-and-drop design editor, and sell across different synchronized and inventoried sales channels such as marketplaces or comparison shopping engines using a “commerce cockpit.”
“Business success in the digital world is above all driven by speed and flexibility – thus SMBs must constantly adapt their business according to the high expectations of their customers in order to remain competitive,” 1&1 Internet CEO Robert Hoffmann said. “This applies especially to the ecommerce sector. With our revised eShop portfolio, we offer ‘ecommerce for everyone’. Using the 1&1 eShop based on ePages techology, SMBs can sell fast and easily on all channels. At the same time, they can concentrate on their core business – we will take care of the rest.”
The ePages Now-powered shops


Cloud security is holding back more than four out of five organizations from adopting the latest technologies, according to a report released Tuesday by Gigamon.
Vanson Bourne surveyed 500 IT decision makers from organizations of various sizes in the U.S., U.K., Germany, and France during May to compile the report Hide and Seek: Cybersecurity in the Cloud (PDF). It shows almost three quarters of respondents (72 percent) have not scaled their monitoring and security infrastructure as their data volume has increased, and that over one-third (35 percent) intend to approach the security of their cloud networks the same way as their on-premise security operation.
This is despite the same decision makers reporting strong cloud adoption, as 37 percent say the majority of their organization’s application workloads are currently in the cloud, and 73 percent say the majority will be in the cloud within three years. Security concerns are also not holding back the storage of “crown jewels” in the cloud, such as corporate information (56 percent), and personally identifiable information (47 percent).
See also: New Cloud Technology Partners Solution to Kickstart AWS Adoption
Almost half of organizations (43 percent) do not have full visibility into data on their network, according to the report. Factors reducing visibility appear to include data silos, with 78 percent agreeing data is most siloed between SecOps and NetOps, as well as hybrid environments, which 49 percent say


GoDaddy has reached an agreement to sell managed hosting provider PlusServer to funds advised by BC Partners for €397 million ($456 million), the company announced Tuesday.
PlusServer is based in Cologne, Germany, and was acquired by GoDaddy as part of the €1.69 billion Host Europe Group (HEG) deal in December. GoDaddy said at the time it would consider strategic alternatives for PlusServer, including its sale, and it was treated as an asset for sale since the deal closed in April. GoDaddy will now use the funds from the sale plus cash on hand to repay its €500 million bridge loan, according to the announcement.
Reuters reports that PlusServer had over 300 employees and earned approximately €100 million in revenue last year.
“The market for managed hosting in Germany is highly fragmented, and PlusServer is an ideal platform for consolidating this market,” BC Partners managing partner Stefan Zuschke said in a statement on Tuesday, according to Reuters.
PlusServer will assume €23 million in liabilities and retain €12 million in cash under the deal, GoDaddy says.
BC Partners other current investments include Cyxtera, the data center provider it formed, along with Medina Capital, by acquiring CenturyLink assets in May.
The deal is subject to standard regulatory approval, and is expected to close by the end of August.


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Cloud hosting provider Linode announced the opening of a new data center in Frankfurt, Germany on Monday, its eighth data center and first in continental Europe.

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In an effort to shed light on the German Parliamentary inquiry into NSA surveillance in Germany, WikiLeaks released 1,380 pages of transcripts from the unclassified sessions on Tuesday. The inquiry has touched off multiple scandals despite numerous barriers to media and public access, such as withheld transcripts, a ban on…

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German technology companies are using cloud at a rate almost double that of the overall German industry. According to the Cloud Monitor 2015 released by Bitkom on Tuesday, 71 percent of the IT companies in Germany use cloud services. This is much higher than the rate of the overall German…

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