Trickbot Stopped by Microsoft, Benefits Financial institutions, Health Care Companies, and Consumers
Reports of tech firms taking down a major a hacking tool used by Russian attackers have been circulating, and this time it was confirmed that the tool was meant to sway voter opinions or corrupt computer systems that are used to maintain voter rolls. The tool also had the potential to report on election-night results or seize computer systems to spread doubt and chaos.
Microsoft leads the charge and has announced that it had taken prohibitive actions against Trickbot, a notorious Russian botnet that has infected more than a million computers and has been the source of an endless number of ransomware attacks.
According to Tom Burt, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President, Customer Security & Trust, Microsoft has “disrupted Trickbot through a court order we obtained as well as technical action we executed in partnership with telecommunications providers around the world. We have now cut off key infrastructure so those operating Trickbot will no longer be able to initiate new infections or activate ransomware already dropped into computer systems.”
Microsoft was granted permission to disable any IP address or server used by Trickbot, as well as block Trickbot’s owners from buying more servers.
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The Chaos that Trickbot Does
Trickbot has been considered a major threat to financial institutions as the malware previously accessed online banking websites and stole funds from people, banks, payment processors, and credit unions without a consumer ever knowing what happened.
According to Burt, “people are unaware of Trickbot’s activity as the operators have designed it to hide itself. After Trickbot captures login credentials and personal information, operators use that information to access people’s bank accounts. People experience a normal login process and are typically unaware of the underlying surveillance and theft.”
Over the four years that Trickbot has appeared, ransomware attacks have been increasing and have targeted everyone, from city governments to health care companies like United Health Services and its 400 health care facilities in the U.S. and U.K.
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