SIDN, ISPs & SURFnet Launch AbuseHUB To Tackle Botnets


[news release] During the ECP’s annual congress at the AFAS Circustheater in Scheveningen, the Abuse Information Exchange officially launched the AbuseHUB. The HUB is a system for the central processing of information about botnet infections in the Netherlands, designed to speed up the detection of infected computers and to bring internet users faster and better help dealing with viruses. The new set-up means botnets can be tackled more effectively and internet security in the Netherlands can be further enhanced. The AbuseHUB is an initiative by seven internet service providers, SURFnet and SIDN, realised with financial support from the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and SIDN.

Number of infections is high and rising
Botnets are networks of computers that, unknown to their owners, have been infected with a virus or other malware, enabling someone else to control them. Botnets are widely used for sending spam and mounting cyber-attacks. In most cases, botnet software barely affects the infected computer. Consequently, the owners are often unaware that anything is wrong. However, the activities of botnets can cause a lot of harm and inconvenience to others. Research by Delft University of Technology suggests that, over a year, between 5 and 10 per cent of consumers in the Netherlands suffer a botnet infection. Abuse IX is determined to get that figure down.

Strength in numbers
Abuse Information Exchange is a joint initiative by the internet service providers KPN, SOLCON, Tele2, UPC, XS4ALL, Zeelandnet and Ziggo, plus SIDN. Established in 2012, the association is a spin-off of ECP – the Platform for the Information Society. The newly formed organisation was strengthened further when SURFnet joined a short while later. Since then, the partners have been busy designing the AbuseHUB, which has been realised by software developer Ibuildings. After thorough testing, the AbuseHUB is now ready for use. Today marks its official launch. “The AbuseHUB will collate and analyse botnet infection reports and send the findings to the affiliated organisations,” explained Gert Wabeke, Chairman of the Abuse Information Exchange. “So, for example, the internet service providers will have an up-to-date picture of reported infections in their network, enabling them to take swift, targeted action to deal with the botnets. That means that we can limit the damage done by the botnets and cut costs.”

Large-scale support
Roelof Meijer, SIDN’s CEO: “To a considerable extent, internet security is down to the individual user. However, it also depends on the involvement of the internet industry and the government. The strength of this initiative is that it comes from within the sector and therefore enjoys a lot of support. We saw the same with the Notice and Take Down Code, which was developed and implemented by the sector of its own volition. The Netherlands is ahead of the game in that respect. We are proud that SIDN has been able to contribute to this initiative by providing technical management of the AbuseHUB. What’s more, through our role as administrator of the .nl domain, we have a lot of information that can be very useful to Exchange members in the fight against botnets. It’s good that we can now make even more effective use of our data. That contributes to the security of the .nl domain and of the internet in the Netherlands. So everyone benefits.”

This SIDN announcement was sourced from: