A burgeoning market is developing for the sale of hacker malware tools and services.
The latest quarterly security report from software outfit PandaLabs says business models for the sale of such tools and services are rapidly developing.
The report reveals that contracting a denial of service attack can cost between £5 and £10 per hour, while a spam server can be rented for £250 a day, and a list of 32 million e-mail accounts costs around £750.
Luis Corrons, technical director of PandaLabs, said, "In recent months we have witnessed the growing professionalisation of digital crime. The first step for cyber-crooks was when they started looking for profits from their activity instead of just notoriety.
"Now they are creating a vast online malware market, where there are even specialised segments."
In this new market, said PandaLabs, there are criminals specialising in creating malicious code, with some dedicated to distributing it and others simply renting it out.
Such tools can be used to build malware or manage botnets of infected computers.