overview of how nefarious botnet programs work by hijacking thousands of computers, usually without their owners’ knowledge.
Botnets - networks of compromised computers controlled by hackers known as “bot-herders” - have become a serious problem in cyberspace. “Microsoft is a founding member of Botnet Task Force, and have executed a takedown of Waledac, a large and well-known “spambot” – known internally as “Operation b49” – In a recent analysis, Microsoft found that between Dec 3-21, 2009, appx. 651 million spam emails attributable to Waledac were directed to Hotmail accounts alone, including offers and scams related to online pharmacies, imitation goods, jobs, penny stocks and more. On Feb 22, in response to a complaint filed by Microsoft (“Microsoft Corporation v. John Does 1-27, et. al.”, Civil action number 1:10CV156) in the U.S. District Court of Eastern Virginia, a federal judge granted a temporary restraining order cutting off 277 Internet domains believed to be run by criminals as the Waledac bot. This action has quickly and effectively cut off traffic to Waledac at the “.com” or domain registry level, severing the connection between the command and control centers of the botnet and most of its thousands of zombie computers around the world.”