April 27, 2012
Tags: computer virus, cybercrime, DNSChanger, internet
If you have visited a website in the last few years that asked you to install a “video codec” to watch a web video you might have accidentally installed the “DNSChanger” virus. As a result, you could find that your computer is unable to access the internet after July 9th.
In 2007, a group of cyber-criminals launched a lucrative scheme where they would have a virus downloaded on the machines of unsuspecting people that allowed them to change the computer’s DNS. The result was web browsers would be redirected to websites that mirrored many popular web sites that contained ads providing revenue to the criminals. The scheme generated over $14 million over four years.
FBI officials replaced the infected servers with new servers using the same DNS as the viruses so that users wouldn’t lose internet immediately after the arrest of the men behind the scheme. However, those servers will go offline on July 9th meaning that infected computers will lose internet access.
In the United States, there is a 1 in 164 chance your computer could be infected with the virus.
It’s free to find out if your computer has been infected with “DNSChanger.” The “DNS Changer Check-Up” will show a green screen if your computer is not infected or a red screen if it is infected with the virus. If you are infected, you can reinstall your operating system or take it to a computer professional to have the virus removed from your system.