Dirty jobs: The role of freelance labor in web service abuse

Marti Motoyama, Damon McCoy, Kirill Levchenko, Stefan Savage, Geoffrey M. Voelker

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


    Modern Web services inevitably engender abuse, as attackers find ways to exploit a service and its user base. However, while defending against such abuse is generally considered a technical endeavor, we argue that there is an increasing role played by human labor markets. Using over seven years of data from the popular crowdsourcing site Freelancer.com, as well data from our own active job solicitations, we characterize the labor market involved in service abuse. We identify the largest classes of abuse work, including account creation, social networking link generation and search engine optimization support, and characterize how pricing and demand have evolved in supporting this activity.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 20th USENIX Security Symposium
    PublisherUSENIX Association
    Number of pages16
    ISBN (Electronic)9781931971874
    StatePublished - 2011
    Event20th USENIX Security Symposium - San Francisco, United States
    Duration: Aug 8 2011Aug 12 2011

    Publication series

    NameProceedings of the 20th USENIX Security Symposium


    Conference20th USENIX Security Symposium
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CitySan Francisco

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Computer Networks and Communications
    • Information Systems
    • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality


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