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Microsoft Seized Zeus Malware in Botnet Rampage

Microsoft along with several other partners seized several cyber crime groups that employed a disrupted piece of malicious software, Zeus and SpyEye banking Trojan botnets towards stealing US$ 100 Million, during the last 5 years, reported computerworld on March 26, 2012.

The Digital Crimes Unit of the Company in partnership with the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC), the Electronic Payments Association NACHA, and Kyrus Tech together placed the immediate legal and technical attack over a number of harmful botnets employing Zeus family of botnet malware.

Botnets remain dependent on several compromised PCs that can conduit personal data to their operators and thus take down all necessary details including credit card details to e-mail particulars. These particulars can be employed to take over a website with botnet operators that offer an overload page with a constant stream of traffic, distributed denial of service attack (DDOS) through remotely controlling the infected PCs.

These infections are provoked through spam e-mails that encourages users to click on the links from forged lottery companies and others posing to be sent from Microsoft. The e-mails and consecutively, the sites often look genuine, with botnet operators employing official logos, texts, and other elements that seem to be completely convincing. The malware generally install software on the user's PC and consequently allow them to monitor and control it.

The most complex target, called as Zeus botnets were being attacked by Microsoft and the creators of Zeus offer the botnet code for sale charging them US$ 700-15,000 based on their level of customer support and customization.

However, the court has permitted Microsoft and its partners to capture all the servers in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and Lombard, Illinois. As such, Microsoft has already captured 800 domains that are part of Zeus' infrastructure.

The statement from Microsoft could not clarify the point specifically though the other reports strongly that the hosting firms had been inadvertently acting as the primary infrastructure resources linked with the ZeuS botnets, rather than being a collaborator in cybercrime.

Related article: Microsoft Patches Live OneCare to Tackle Quarantined E-Mails

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