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The owners of the Rustock botnet used to run one of the biggest spam operations in the world, capable of sending out over 30 billion spam messages each and every day. They also violated some of Microsoft's trademarks in those emails. Microsoft obviously didn't like that. The company teamed up with federal prosecutors and gave Rustock a virtual butt-whupping that brought the network to its knees. Now, Microsoft wants info on the botnet's handlers, and they'll give you tons of money if you supply them with names.
How much money? Enough money to send your kids to college, buy a house, or supply you with dollar burgers for every meal for the rest of your life. $250,000, to be exact. And they're posting the bounty online and offering the reward to anybody in the world who can help Microsoft wrangle up the Rustock owners.
"Today, we take our pursuit a step further," Richard Boscovich, the senior attorney in Microsoft's Digital Crimes Unit said on the company's blog. "After publishing notices in two Russian newspapers last month to notify the Rustock operators of the civil lawsuit, we decided to augment our civil discovery efforts to identify those responsible for controlling the notorious Rustock botnet by issuing a monetary reward in the amount of $250,000 for new information that results in the identification, arrest and criminal conviction of such individual(s)."
For that kind of dough, we wouldn't be surprised if Rustock's owners turned themselves in to claim the reward!