Microsoft says it has initiated more than 100 legal cases against individuals suspected of running online phishing scams in the EMEA region.
The software giant says 53 of these cases will have already started by the end of March and will include actions against alleged phishers in Turkey, France, Spain, Morocco, the UK, Germany, Austria, Egypt and Sweden.
They will be followed by at least 51 more cases filed against people across the region who have allegedly created bogus Web sites and used spam e-mail in a bid to con Internet banking custoemrs into disclosing personal financial data.
Neil Holloway, president of Microsoft EMEA, says: "Phishing is a crime. It undermines consumers' trust in the Internet and is an impediment to European policy-makers' and industries' efforts to boost citizens' use of innovative and valuable Internet services."
The legal action is part of a wider global campaign against online fraud which has already led to the shut-down of 4744 phishing sites worldwide.
Last year the firm also filed federal lawsuits against 117 un-named defendants in the US who were suspected of conducting illegal phishing scams.