DENVER – After months of warnings from the FBI and other internet companies, an estimated 200,000 people across the globe could lose internet access thanks to a malware virus.
The infection, known as the DNS Changer, is the result of a group of hackers that manipulated infected computers to connect to servers that could collect personal information like passwords and be controlled remotely.
“Users of infected machines were unaware that their computers had been compromised—or that the malicious software rendered their machines vulnerable to a host of other viruses.” said a news release from the FBI shortly after the hackers were first arrested in November of 2011.
To check to see if your computer’s been infected click here.
Since the hackers were first discovered in November, the FBI has kept some servers running in which infected computers could still connect to in order to gain internet access. Effective July 9, the FBI is expected to shut down those remaining servers, resulting in some disconnects.
“While it is going to be kind of scary and people are going to be worried if they’re going to get cut off or not, I think the outage will be small,” said Charles Tendell, a Denver based computer security expert during an interview with KDVR on Sunday.
The virus had allowed infected computers to be comprised through a system known as DNS or domain name system. That system allows computers to turn domain names like “google.com” into a computer code that allows a user’s system to understand which web server to connect to. In March, FBI officials had been expected to shutdown the DNS hacked servers but that decision was pushed back until July to allow more infected users to be cleaned up.