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Microsoft has promised to work even closer with key European law agencies as part of its efforts to disrupt and dismantle cybercrime networks.
Microsoft signed a memorandum of understanding with Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) department, promising to boost collaboration on forensic and technical analysis of malware and botnets.
The firm signed the deal at its first Cybercrime Enforcement Summit, attended by 60 leaders from law enforcement, academia and the private sector to discuss new approaches to tackling cybercrime.
Brad Smith, Microsoft's general counsel, said the deals underlined the firm's determination to take the fight to cyber criminals.
“Cyber criminals are increasingly sophisticated in preying on consumers, including children and senior citizens,” he said. “These agreements will help the private and public sectors fight cybercrime more effectively, while protecting our customers’ privacy.”
Work between Europol and Microsoft has proven successful in the past, with the takedown of the ZeroAccess botnet in December cited by Europol’s assistant director Troels Oerting, who is in charge of EC3.
“This kind of collaboration is the new model needed to attack cybercrime, and that is why we’re committed to working with Microsoft so we can take more aggressive action in the future.”
While botnet takedowns are a good way of disrupting criminals and grabbing the headlines, some within the security community have questioned its effectiveness and argued that looking to arrest those behind the botnets is a better approach.