According to a press release today from the High Tech Crime Team of the National Crime Squad in the Netherlands, action has been taken to isolate 143 servers from the Internet.
The servers were actively involved in the Bredolab botnet, from the release they would appear to be command and control servers. The servers were hosted by a company called LeaseWeb, one of the largest hosting providers in the Netherlands, who fully cooperated in the coordinated takedown operation.
Bredolab is primarily a downloading platform and has served to distribute fake AV and ZeuS to victim computers. The botnet, which originated in Russia, only rose to prominence in August 2009. Dutch Authorities estimate that it was capable of infecting 3 million computers per month at its peak. The primary initial trigger for infection with Bredolab was usually though mail, but infection vectors have been widely abused and also include drive-by download and even propagation through other forms of malware, for example, Cutwail has been seen to drop Bredolab as a payload, and Bredolab has been known to return the favour!
It is unclear right now whether the botnet has been effectively decapitated or it this only represents a setback to the criminals behind it. The bots remain infected with the malware so if alternative command & control servers exist, then reconfiguration and regrouping remains a possibility. TrendLabs are investigating current activity levels of the botnet and I will update this blog as soon as new information is available.