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Microsoft Gets Legal Approval To Acquire Former Waledac Domains

Acquisition of 276 domains will put dangerous botnet down for good, software giant says
A federal court judge is recommending that Microsoft be allowed to acquire the 276 Internet domains that formerly drove the Waledac botnet, which plagued users and enterprises for more than a year.

According to a USA Today report, the U.S. District Court of Eastern Virginia has granted a motion that, in effect, gives Microsoft permanent ownership of the Web domains once used by the Waledac cybergang to send instructions to hundreds of thousands of "bot" PCs.

The idea is to put the botnet permanently out of business by taking its component parts out of the cybercriminals' hands, Microsoft said in a blog.

"Our legal action to permanently shut down the botnet has been successful, and we have begun working with Internet service providers and CERTs to help customers remove the Waledac infection from their computers," Microsoft said.

The number of unique IP addresses infected by Waledac, which was taken down earlier this year, is steadily declining, Microsoft says. "As of August 30th, there were just more than 58,000 unique IP addresses infected with Waledac malware," the company said. "That's down from nearly 64,000 addresses during the week of July 23rd."

Microsoft says it is working with CERTs and ISPs to notify the infected customers so they can remove the Waledac malware from their computers.

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