The feeling that I’m living in the future is beginning to overwhelm me:
Websense is reporting that Gmail’s CAPTCHA has been broken, and that bots are beginning to sign up with a one in five success rate. More interestingly, they have a lot of technical details about how the botnet members coordinate with two different computers during the process. They believe that the second host is either trying to learn to crack the CAPTCHA or that it’s a quality check of some sort. Curiously, the bots pretend to read the help information while breaking the CAPTCHA, probably to prevent Google from giving them a timeout message.
I know the feeling – like déjà vu – is just a trick. I mean, I might have had the same feeling in the 1910’s reading about the first tanks being subverted by mustard gas. But the fact that these are invisible and weirdly semi-autonomous machines really kinda takes it to another level.