Microsoft Corp. has shut down two botnet C&C that were used to steal confidential information. On March 23 the software giant’s employees accompanied by US authority representatives raided two office buildings in Pennsylvania and Illinois. Their purpose was to disrupt the function of systems that were used to spread and control Zeus Trojan Bots.
With a warrant from a federal judge authorizing the raid Microsoft technical professionals and lawyers harvested evidence and unplugged Web servers used by cyber crooks.
The raid took place as part of civil suit brought by Microsoft in its campaign to become a leader in combating computing crimes. The company’s purpose was to cease control over the equipment used to control botnets.
The actions, taken by the company, are considered to be a law enforcement function. Fighting the cybercrime is the brainchild of a former federal prosecutor Richard Boscovich. Right now Boscovich holds position of a senior lawyer in Microsoft’s digital crimes unit. Former federal servant used to handle drug, computer and financial crime cases and now he devised a noval legal strategy in order to underpin the growing number of Microsoft’s civil suits against botnet operators.
The lawyer said the raids were meant to send message to participants of the scheme, whose identities were not yet known. “We’re letting them know we’re looking at them” Mr. Boscovich said.
“Taking the disruption into the courthouse was a brilliant idea and is helping the rest of the industry to reconsider what actions are possible, and that action is needed and can succeed,” pointed out Richard Perlotto, director at the Shadowserver Foundation, a nonprofit group that tracks data about tools used for online fraud and forms of computer crime.