Microsoft dismisses lawsuit in Kelihos botnet case

Microsoft has announced today that it has dismissed its own lawsuit against a man and his company who Microsoft originally suspected of helping to run the Kelihos botnet. Microsoft announced in September that it had helped to take down that particular botnet which was used for "sending out billions of spam messages, harvesting users’ personal information (such as e-mails and passwords), fraudulent stock scams and, in some instances, websites promoting the sexual exploitation of children."

At the time, Microsoft filed a lawsuit against Dominique Alexander Piatti and his dotFREE Group SRO. It was the first time Microsoft had decided to take legal action against suspected botnet organizers. However, today Microsoft said, "Since the Kelihos takedown, we have been in talks with Mr. Piatti and dotFREE Group s.r.o. and, after reviewing the evidence voluntarily provided by Mr. Piatti, we believe that neither he nor his business were involved in controlling the subdomains used to host the Kelihos botnet. Rather, the controllers of the Kelihos botnet leveraged the subdomain services offered by Mr. Piatti’s cz.cc domain."

Microsoft has entered into a settlement with Piatti and as part of the deal Microsoft said that Piatti "agreed to delete or transfer all the subdomains used to either operate the Kelihos botnet, or used for other illegitimate purposes, to Microsoft." Microsoft still has a lawsuit against "John Does 1-22", the unnamed and currently unidentified people who Microsoft believes were the real operators of the Kelihos botnet.

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4 Comments

I credit Microsoft for spearheading taking down botnets but its no secret that these botnets exploits underlying vulnerabilities in the software Microsoft make.

JJ_ said,
I credit Microsoft for spearheading taking down botnets but its no secret that these botnets exploits underlying vulnerabilities in the software Microsoft make.

There are bugs and security holes in all computer systems, it is impossible to be bug-free, what matters is how you handle it. Microsoft didn't used to be very good at it and got a bad rep. Now they work with the security commuity to patch the bugs before they are disclosed, provide predicible release cycles, allow security updates even for pirated copies (as an infected pirate copy could still cause trouble for genuine users), provide free antivirus for most users, implemented for security features at the OS level. What more can they do? The bad rep makes everything automatically "Microsofts Fault", and most of these Microsoft blamers call Microsoft "M$" and think everyone should pirate Windows (because it is not worth paying for) or use Linux (Because they are fanatics)

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