Microsoft gets legal ownership of 276 spamming botnets domains

The U.S. District Court of Eastern Virginia last week granted a motion that, in effect, gives Microsoft permanent ownership of 276 Web domains once used by the Waledac cybergang to send instructions to hundreds of thousands of spam-spreading PCs. With permanent ownership of domains, Microsoft now has a proven legal means to take aim at […]

The U.S. District Court of Eastern Virginia last week granted a motion that, in effect, gives Microsoft permanent ownership of 276 Web domains once used by the Waledac cybergang to send instructions to hundreds of thousands of spam-spreading PCs. With permanent ownership of domains, Microsoft now has a proven legal means to take aim at U.S.-registered domains — including .com, .net, .biz and .org domains — shown to be conducting criminal activity. "It's open season on botnets," says Boscovich. "The hunting licenses have been handed out, and we're coming back for more."

The Waledac botnet was a major source of spam and PC infections, at its peak in 2009 delivering 1.5 billion spam messages daily.

"Although defendants didn't respond in court, the company says it was clear that they were aware of the case because they "actively tried to retaliate, attempting to launch a distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack against the law firm that filed the suit and even going so far as to threaten one of the researchers involved in the case.", explains Microsoft.

Here's information on how to remove the Waledac infection.

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