The Zues botnet, which controlled around 3.6 million PCs in the US and many more around the world, is taking a bit longer than Microsoft thought to clean up.
Microsoft sized control of the botnet in earlier this year by attacking its Command and Control servers in Pennsylvania and Illinois.
The botnet was being used primarily to steal banking details of infected users so their accounts could be emptied, and was also sending Facebook spam.
Now Microsoft has won a court order on the 28th November to allow the company and its financial-services partners to continue to administer command-and-control servers for two Zeus botnets.
"This additional time will allow Microsoft to continue to work with Internet service providers and Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERTs) to clean those computers that are still infected with the malware," Richard Boscovich, senior attorney for Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit said.
Besides the Zues botnet, over the past three years Microsoft has also used a combination of civil lawsuits and technical takedowns to disrupt Waledac in Operation b49, Rustock in Operation b107, Kelihos in Operation b79. Some of the operations had a sustained impact on reducing spam and attacks on other computers and users.
Read more at eWeek here.