A self-proclaimed geek from the age of 14, Andre DiMino had always been interested in computers and networking. But it wasn't until he entered his professional life many years later that he became interested in the security side of that world.
Just five years ago, hunting botnets, said DiMino, was a much different game. The botnets were fairly straightforward, he said, and the primary method of communication was the IRC (Internet Relay Chat). DiMino and other volunteers were able to act like criminals by joining a botnet, watching its traffic to get an understanding of how it was architected and learn more its particular function. They found their efforts were worthwhile as they began contacting network hosts, alerting them that were supporting the botnets and seeing them shutdown.