A collection of compromised computers running malicious programs that are controlled remotely by a cybercriminals. Cybercriminals exercise remote control through automated processes (bots) in public IRC channels or web sites (such web sites may either be run directly by the ‘bot herder’, or they may be legitimate web sites that have been subverted for this purpose). Since the whole process occurs without the knowledge or consent of the computer user, botnets are sometimes referred to as zombie networks.

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