How to steal cloud computing capacity

Researchers find way to exploit cloud providers' browsers

Pssst. Know anybody who wants some cloud computing real cheap, as in free? All you have to do is misuse cloud providers' browsers and you can live like a parasite off their power, reports Thomas Claburn at InformationWeek.

The discovery of this once-in-a-lifetime deal was made by researchers at North Carolina State University and the University of Oregon. They even wrote a paper about it, called "Abusing Cloud-Based Browsers for Fun and Profit." They used a technique developed by Google (NASDAQ: GOOG), known as Browser MapReduce, which "involves the aggregation of free JavaScript processing offered by cloud-based browsers, in conjunction with a scheduling scheme to work around the computational limitations imposed by cloud-browser providers," Claburn explains.

Cloud browsers are much like poorly secured email servers, according to the researchers. "By rendering web pages in the cloud, the providers of cloud browsers can become open computation centers, much in the same way that poorly configured mail servers become open relays," they wrote in their paper.

For more:
- see Thomas Claburn's article at InformationWeek

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