Russian authorities have identified the authors of the notorious Pinch malware creation toolkit. Arrests are expected to follow.
Pinch is a Trojan creation toolkit that is reckoned to have been used by virus writers to infect tens of millions of PCs. The toolkit is sold in black market hacking forums. Script kiddies were able to order a customised version of the Trojan, as well as purchasing 'technical support' from the authors of the program. Russian hacker forums were flooded with ads for this 'service'.
Russian anti-virus firm Kaspersky Lab reports that Russian law enforcement officials are closing in on the individuals behind the malware.
Nikolay Patrushev, head of Russia's Federal Security Services, said that the authors of the infamous Pinch Trojan have been identified as two Russian VXers, called Ermishkin and Farkhutdinov. "The investigation will soon be completed and taken to court," Patrushev said.
However, as Kaspersky points out, the prosecution of the Pinch authors (while welcome) is unlikely to have much impact on the password-stealing Trojan scene.
"Unfortunately, it doesn't mean that new variants of Pinch will disappear," it notes. "Sadly, the source code of this Trojan is circulating on the internet, and we'll certainly encounter 'remakes' of this pest, created by virus writers who have not yet been arrested." ®