In September, Microsoft named Dominique Piatti and his company dotFree Group SRO as controllers of the botnet. The move marked the first time Microsoft had named a defendant in one of its botnet-related civil suits.
“Since the Kelihos takedown, we have been in talks with Mr. Piatti and dotFREE Group s.r.o. and, after reviewing the evidence voluntarily provided by Mr. Piatti, we believe that neither he nor his business were involved in controlling the subdomains used to host the Kelihos botnet,” blogged Richard Domingues Boscovich, Senior Attorney for Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit. “Rather, the controllers of the Kelihos botnet leveraged the subdomain services offered by Mr. Piatti’s cz.cc domain.”
In regards to Kelihos, Boscovich said Microsoft is continuing its legal fight against the 22 “John Does” listed as co-defendants in the lawsuit.