FTC takes down 3FN

In slightly belated news, FTC had forced a shutdown of 3FN.net – a hosting company that was giving safe harbor to all sorts of cyber-criminal activity.

As usual, Brian Krebs from the Washington Post provides an excellent overview of what had happened and why:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/securityfix/2009/06/ftc_sues_shuts_down_n_calif_we.html

The 3FN was very popular amongst Russian “adult” web masters and “black SEO” professionals, who are now quite unhappy about the take down and vent their frustration on various forums.

Apparently, a number of perfectly legitimate websites were also hosted there, like the Ukrainian association of automotive enthusiasts: www.avtrans.org.ua. This sort of collateral damage is inevitable, when a large amount of illegal content is mixed with legitimate but niche regional sites.

Everyone in the industry is eagerly waiting to see a drop in global spam volumes as 3FN was hosting a number of command and control centers for Cutwail/Pushdo botnets.

We’ve been noticing a small decline in spam coming to our traps. However, given the regular spam volume fluctuations during week and day time, it’s early to say if the trend is significant enough to connect to the 3FN news. We hope to have a better picture by the end of the week.