Microsoft has officially announced that our civil case against the operators of the Rustock botnet (a major source of spam) has been closed and our teams have turned over the information we’ve gathered to the FBI.
The Rustock botnet is considered one of the largest sources of spam on the Internet and our case is helping to reduce the effects of the botnet and ensure that it will never be used for cybercrime again.
Learn how to clean an infected computer and help protect your PC with botnet protection and avoid malware.
What is the Rustock botnet?
The Rustock botnet is a network of infected computers controlled by cybercriminals and used for spam, fraud, and other cybercrime. The owners of infected computers probably had no idea that their computer was being used to send spam.
What did the Rustock botnet do?
Most of the spam messages generated by the Rustock botnet promoted counterfeit or unapproved generic pharmaceuticals from unlicensed and unregulated online drug sellers. Rustock spam also used Microsoft’s trademark to promote these drugs. In another scheme, Rustock-generated email lured people into lottery scams in which spammers attempted to convince people that they had won a lottery. The victims were told that they needed to send the spammers money to collect the larger lottery winnings.
Help protect yourself against these kinds of email and web scams.
Microsoft is offering a $250,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of Rustock’s operators. Any tips should be sent directly to the FBI at MS_Referrals@ic.fbi.gov.
More information about the Rustock botnet
- Microsoft on the Issues Blog: Rustock Civil Case Closed: Microsoft Refers Criminal Evidence to FBI
- Video: A Spam King Falls: The Rustock Takedown
- Security Tips & Talk: Rustock