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Security Technology

A Conference For Malware Writers 112

tsu doh nimh writes "There is a security conference being held in Mumbai later this year called MalCon, and the organizers say it's the first ever conference dedicated to the 'malcoder community.' Brian Krebs interviewed one of them and got this gem: 'Just like the concept of "ethical hacking" has helped organizations to see that hackers are not all that bad, it is time to accept that "ethical malcoding" is required to research, identify and mitigate newer malwares in a "proactive" way.' Bruce Schneier is speaking at a sister MalCon event in Pune, India two days later, and he said he doesn't agree with the organizer's premise that more malware is needed to build better security tools."
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A Conference For Malware Writers

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  • What could possibly go wrong?

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by jd ( 1658 )

      Microsoft will doubtless send an engineer so that the malware authors can reserve the bandwidth they need for all those coredumps mentioned earlier.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Can we nuke the site from orbit?

    • by sco08y ( 615665 )

      Bambam, this is Grover.

      Grover, this is Bambam.

      Bambam, this is Grover. Request, orbital strike, thermonuclear payload, TRP Malcon.

      Grover, this is Bambam, send nuclear authorization codes.

      Bambam, this is Grover, authorization code follows, "kill it with fire."

      Shot over.

      Shout out.

      Splash over.

      Splash out.

      Bambam, this is Grover, fire for effect.

    • Car Bomb (Score:3, Insightful)

      by sycodon ( 149926 )

      If ever a car bomb was an appropriate response to anything, this is it.

    • by ZosX ( 517789 )

      Can we nuke the site from orbit?

      How is this remotely a troll? This is the best idea I've heard all day!

  • by Monkeedude1212 ( 1560403 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:39PM (#33396650) Journal

    Take off and nuke the site from Orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  • Bad analogy is bad (Score:4, Insightful)

    by $RANDOMLUSER ( 804576 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:40PM (#33396668)
    We need to create new, more virulent biological weapons to improve medicine.
    • We need bad laws to make better lawyers.
    • You know, if consumer technology ever gets to the point that sk1rpt k1dd1es can mess with DNA and create biological weapons from scratch... I'm pretty sure I will want researchers investigating the creation and mitigation of biological weapons.
    • We need to create new, more virulent biological weapons to improve medicine.

      Actually, the government has active biowarfare labs churning out new and more virulent bugs specifically so they can create new vaccines and targeted drugs.

      Every now and then they discover something that is useful outside the field of biochem weapons.

      • That's not correct. They develop the bugs so that they have something to theoretically use on the other side as a hail Mary, they develop the drugs on the off chance that some of us survive and hopefully none of them. What you're proposing is nonsense, they don't decide that "hey we need a new vaccine," it's more like "hey we need the ability to wipe out everybody else."

        But yes from time to time there's useful stuff that comes out of it as a pure accident.
  • Seriously... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by boneclinkz ( 1284458 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:43PM (#33396694)
    I love it when guys like this try and come off as if they provide some sort of legitimate service, and that they have an actual organized "community."

    What's next?

    Pedocon: Discussing the tools and tactics of the new generation of pedophiles, to enable parents to better protect their children.
  • by Guido del Confuso ( 80037 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:45PM (#33396716)

    Also, they're having a conference for criminals down at the local police station. Real big conference, trust me. I bet there'll be booth babes.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      I bet there'll be booth babes.

      I'd go for the booth babes at the criminal convention over the malware booth babes...bound to be fewer viruses...

  • after (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    They should give out free promotional USB memory devices! 100pts. for every attendee you get saying 'Let's see what's on this... oh... what an idiot...!' and facepalming/bursting into flames.

  • hopefully it really is
    • by bsDaemon ( 87307 )

      You'd think that if anyone were going to know better than to accept an invitation from a dethroned Nigerian prince to join him on a luxury vacation in the exotic east, it would be these guys... :-/

    • to teach better tucking

  • MalCon (Score:5, Funny)

    by Hatta ( 162192 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:53PM (#33396842) Journal

    They should hold it outside, under a bunch of large canopies. Then they'd be sure to have a lot of MalCon tents there.

    • Clothiers could set up booths from which to hawk malwear.

      Participants ante up some money to compete at writing the best (worst?) malware using an interpreted language. The pooled entrance fees would be placed into the Script Kitty for distribution to the winner.

      The possibilities are endless.

    • Ouch!
    • yep makes the predator fireing solution so much simpler:-0
    • I was going to make that exact pun. My hat is off to you, sir/madam.

      To prevent this post from being a "+1" let me add the following [eckernet.com].
  • Ethical Malcoding (Score:5, Insightful)

    by guyminuslife ( 1349809 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @03:58PM (#33396920)
    Ethical Malcoding: From the people who brought you:

    Ethical Terrorism
    Ethical Oppression
    Ethical Genocide
    Ethical Cannibalism
    Ethical Amorality
    ...and many, many more!

    Maybe they're hoping that by concentrating enough evil in one room, they'll create a black hole of iniquity that will flush these fuckers down a cosmic toilet.
    • Ethical Amorality

      They give up their scruples so we can have more.

    • There ain't no party like a Donner Party [wikipedia.org].

      Seriously, the situations are incredibly rare, but I can see in true crisis situations, someone eating the flesh of another person to survive until they can get help/other sources of food, without morally transgressing. I could see a parent, seeing their family on the verge of starvation, giving of themselves (quite literally), so their children could survive. I think such situations could very well be ethical.

      • Well, sure, and if SkyNet is destroying all humans and you can stop it by infecting it with a nasty virus, then you're a hero. But that's not really what we're talking about.
    • It could very well be a way for some agencies to track malware writers, or any newcomers wanting to become the next big malware writer...set up a big FAKE malware convention, have people talk for those who listen, send out proof of concept work using code that is traceable, set up perimeter online to spot any of the same code in the wild, track all ip addresses set up for such activity, and voila, you now have a step up on the bad guys...I also tend to overdo it with watching conspiracy movies!

  • Yeah, Right (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MarkvW ( 1037596 ) on Friday August 27, 2010 @04:02PM (#33396960)

    Yeah. Like more murders lead to better murder investigations.

    • Serial Killers (Score:3, Insightful)

      by medv4380 ( 1604309 )
      But isn't what you say true. Serial Killers are better murders, and they result in specialized training and expertise on the side of the police, FBI, Scotland Yard.
    • professional security researcher
    • authored custom tools for hacking
    • member of the prestigious national security database
    • discovered vulnerabilities in pizzahut
    • presenter at clubhack

    * http://malcon.org/2010/workshops/MalConMalwareAnalysis2010.pdf [malcon.org]

  • Sounds like a great place for the FBI and every other nation's federal law enforcement bodies set up and find out who the a-holes are.
  • Under the guise of "helping citizens to develop better detection and understanding of Weapons of Mass Destruction"

    Surely weapons of mass destruction do less damage, if they're better understood, and more people know about what techniques are need to make them and how to get around pitfalls and difficulties in constructing WMDs, right?

  • If you like this conference, maybe you'll like the Nigerian Email Conference: http://j-walk.com/other/conf/ [j-walk.com]

  • If only they'd scheduled it 2 years sooner.

  • Seriously, that's one place where killing of attendees is a perfectly valid reaction of a sane person.

  • This is insane. Smart people already understand how malware works. This reminds me of Calvin's dad in Calvin and Hobbes saying "____ builds character" no matter what the thing is. Sometimes things are a negative and they're already fully understood that way. That's the way it is.

    Bruce Schneier is right here; there is no need for a conference of malware developers.

Our business in life is not to succeed but to continue to fail in high spirits. -- Robert Louis Stevenson