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Microsoft went from door to door to take malware-infected routers offline

Routers with security vulnerabilities are the perfect gateway for malware (Image: Stephen Phillips)
Routers with security vulnerabilities are the perfect gateway for malware (Image: Stephen Phillips)
When it became clear that the fight against the malicious software called Trickbot could not be won remotely, Microsoft resorted to drastic measures and sent employees from door to door in order to manually take infected networking hardware offline.
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Not every type of work can be done remotely. While work-from-home employees may have come to this realization during the recent pandemic, it apparently also applies to multi-billion-dollar corporations like Microsoft. The Redmond-based software company reportedly had to make house calls to fight Trickbot, a cunning piece of malware that originated in Eastern Europe and infected millions of devices around the world.

In 2020, officials even feared that the highly adaptable malware could wreak havoc during the presidential election of the United States. While Trickbot can compromise sensitive data like bank and PayPal accounts, it is also capable of exposing infected systems to other malicious software.

In certain South American countries like Brazil, the situation was particularly desperate due to the usage of outdated and therefore vulnerable networking hardware. These dire circumstances forced Microsoft to abandon its strategy of containing the malware remotely. In collaboration with local telecommunication companies, people were sent from door to door to physically unplug the infected routers and put them out of commission. It was a rather extraordinary course of action that indicates how futile Microsoft's fight against the resilient malware truly was.

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Enrico Frahn
Editor of the original article: Enrico Frahn - Tech Writer - 71 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2021
My fascination for technology goes back a long way to the Pentium II era. Modding, overclocking and treasuring computer hardware has since become an integral part of my life. As a student, I further developed a keen interest in mobile technologies that can make the stressful college life so much easier. After I fell in love with the creation of digital content while working in a marketing position, I now scour the web to bring you the most exciting topics in the world of tech. Outside the office, I’m particularly passionate about motorsports and mountain biking.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 07 > Microsoft went from door to door to take malware-infected routers offline
Enrico Frahn, 2021-07-20 (Update: 2021-07-20)