Security firms call Microsoft’s effort to disrupt botnet to protect against election interference ineffective

SEATTLE – Cyber security researchers questioned the effectiveness of Microsoft’s effort this week to disrupt a botnet it feared could snarl state and local computer systems to sow distrust of the upcoming presidential election.

The software giant said Monday that a court order it won from a federal judge in the Eastern District of Virginia to seize control of U.S.-based servers controlling the Trickbot botnet, a network of computers secretly infected by malware that can be controlled remotely. That allowed Microsoft to disrupt hackers’ ability to operate with the election a little more than two weeks away amid worries that they would spread ransomware to lock up election-reporting systems on election day, shaking the confidence of voters.

But the U.S.-based threat intelligence company Intel 471 found that Trickbot continues to operate four days after Microsoft’s seizure of the botnet’s U.S. servers. And the Swiss security site Feodo Tracker, found 18

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