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US arrests man allegedly behind enormous botnet that enabled cyberattacks and fraud

Illustration of a key being pixelated.
Illustration by Cath Virginia / The Verge | Photo from Getty Images

It’s a scheme that “reads like it’s ripped from a screenplay,” according to one Commerce Department official. Thirty-five-year-old Chinese national YunHe Wang allegedly helped run an international botnet that deployed VPN programs to infect more than 19 million IP addresses around the world.

After distributing malware through programs such as MaskVPN and DewVPN, Wang allegedly operated the botnet and sold access to the compromised IP addresses, according to the Department of Justice. The department says his customers then went on to commit their own crimes under the concealment of the proxied addresses.

The botnet, known as 911 S5, “facilitated cyber-attacks, large-scale fraud, child exploitation, harassment, bomb threats, and export…

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