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Submission + - The largest (distributed) supercomputer ...

RockDoctor writes: Peter Gutmann at Auckland, New Zealand has made some estimates about what is probably the world's largest (distributed) supercomputer. Details are somewhat shady, not because of the secrecy habits of the spooks, or a government's desire to surveil it's citizens. No, the people who've built this (distributed) supercomputer are shadowy because they're simply criminals. The continuing Storm Worm botnet now seems to contain between 1 and 10 million computers, and with a broad-brush estimate of the likely machines involved he comes up with a description of a system that dwarfs all the largest publicly-described supercomputers of the world. I have my suspicions that the estimated "average" computer specification considered is somewhat over-the-top (I'd have to weld together at least two of the machines in my flat to even approach this specification, and I'd have to weld together at least 4 of the best video card in the house), but with an 8-fold difference in processor count between StormWorm and BlueGene/L , there's a lot of room for Gutmann to be both correct and on the low side in his estimates.
With a system like this, is it credible that they (the criminals running this system) are planning for example, to try breaking SSL-encrypted communications in real time?

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