This MSNBC article on botnets is a well-written piece detailing where botnet gangs come from, their “hacker scholarship” programs and the potential for these powerful bot networks to shut down sites on a moments notice if they so choose. In addition there is a discussion of these bot networks being used as terrorist tools – a horrifying thought.
Want more? Here is a discussion about how competitive these bot networks are with one another. The largest network has the ability to extort the most money from gambling sites for example. How? They shut a legitimate site down with traffic from their network of infected computers. The targeted sites are so flooded with traffic, legitimate users cannot get to them to conduct business.