If you cannot get on the internet today, there may be a good reason why – the FBI might be shutting you down.
The U.S. law enforcement agency will be blocking up to 500,000 users around the world who have a malicious program installed on their computer. It will affect anyone who inadvertantly downloaded a piece of ‘malware’ called DNSChanger, which redirects users to fake advertising websites.
Initially, there were more than 4 million infected computers in 100 countries, including 500,000 in the United States, according to the indictment.
As of July 4, there were only about 46,000 in the United States, FBI spokeswoman Jenny Shearer told ABCNews.com today. (That’s out of nearly 300,000 worldwide.)
PCs and Apple Macs have been infected. Routers and iPads were hit, too.
As of June, the United States had more infected computers than any other country, according to data from the DNS Changer Working Group, or DCWG, a group working on cleanup resulting from the malware.
How Do I Know if My Computer Is Infected?
You can check to see whether your computer is infected by clicking on this link, which is run by DCWG.
If the page is green, you’re in the clear. If it’s red, your computer is infected. On Thursday the site got 2 million hits, but very few of those computers were infected, DCWG volunteer Barry Greene told ABCNews.com.
Google and Facebook say they have also set up notifications for infected users. If you type in a search term and see a message that says, “Your computer appears to be infected” at the top of your screen, guess what. Your computer is infected.
Comcast, AT&T and Verizon are among the other organizations notifying customers if they have infected machines.
Important: According to DCWG, you should not need to scan, make changes or download anything to tell whether your computer is infected.
My Computer Is Infected. How to fix DNS Changer Malware?
1) Visit this FBI-approved site – http://www.dns-ok.us – and see if you get an ‘all-clear’ green background or an ‘at risk’ red background.
2) If you have a red background, visit http://www.dcwg.org/fix which lists free virus scanner and removal software.
Our personal recommendations from the free range are Microsoft Windows Defender and Avira.
For more information, visit here: http://www.dcwg.org/detect/