[ bot-net ]
/ ˈbɒtˌnɛt /


a network of computers created by malware and controlled remotely, without the knowledge of the users of those computers: The botnet was used primarily to send spam emails. Hackers built the botnet to carry out DDoS attacks.

Origin of botnet

1990–95 in earlier sense “a network of bots”; bot1 + net(work) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for botnet

  • The attacks are often coordinated by a botnet, a web of compromised computers acting at the whim of the hackers behind the attack.

    Did Russian Authorities Shut Down Ustream?|Ben Jacobs, Anna Nemtsova|May 9, 2012|DAILY BEAST
  • The attack was accomplished by means of a botnet, and for that I felt bad, but it was in the service of a good cause.

    Little Brother|Cory Doctorow
  • There are so many infected PCs on the Internet that the price of hiring an hour or two on a botnet has crashed.

    Little Brother|Cory Doctorow

British Dictionary definitions for botnet


/ (ˈbɒtˌnɛt) /


(sometimes with a capital) a network of computers infected by a program that communicates with its creator in order to send unsolicited emails, attack websites, etc

Word Origin for botnet

C20: from (ro) bot + net (work)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012