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“Shrewd search engines know what you want”

Search engines have a dark side, and they form a vital part of hackers’ toolkits. For instance, once a potential website vulnerability emerges, a quick web search can gather a list of all sites which have that security flaw in their web code.

How better to hunt down hackers than by setting the search engines themselves on them, asks UW CSE Ph.D. student John John.  With colleagues at Microsoft Research Silicon Valley, John has developed SearchAudit, a system that uses the Bing search engine – and the hackers’ own known malicious queries – as guides to malicious sites and forums.

Reach the NewScientist article here.

July 16, 2010