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Software giant Microsoft Corp has won a U.S. court approval to deactivate a global network of computers that the company accused of spreading spam and harmful computer codes, the Wall Street Journal said.
A federal judge in Alexandria, Virginia, granted a request by Microsoft to deactivate 277 Internet domains, which the software maker said is linked to a "botnet," the paper said.
A botnet is an army of infected computers that hackers can control from a central machine.
The company aims to secretly sever communications channels to the botnet before its operators can re-establish links to the network, the paper said.
A US judge granted the firm's request to shut down 277 internet domains, which it said were used to "command and control" the so-called Waledac botnet.
A recent analysis by the firm found that between 3-21 December "approximately 651 million spam e-mails attributable to Waledac were directed to Hotmail accounts alone".
[edited by: bill at 8:40 am (utc) on Feb 26, 2010]
[edit reason] tidy up [/edit]