Arlington, VA – JULY 2, 2012 – Hundreds of thousands ofInternet uses may lose their online access on July 9, 2012, and Better BusinessBureau is urging all consumers and businesses to run a quick and easydiagnostic test to see if their computers are infected. The FBI’s DNS Changer Working Group can detect themalware and explain how to fix infected machines.
“Everyone should check to seeif their computer is infected,” urged Katherine Hutt, spokesperson for theCouncil of Better Business Bureaus. “It takes less than a minute to check and,if your equipment is clean, there is nothing more you need to do. If yourcomputer is infected, the DNS Changer Working Group recommends the necessarysteps to save your computer. But this must be done by July 9th oryou could lose internet access.”
Last November, the FBItook down the servers of international hackers operating out of Estonia. The hackers had already successfully downloadedmalware onto more than half a million computers, turning off virus updates andredirecting consumers to fraudulent websites. If the servers had simply beenshut down, the victims’ computers would no longer be able to access theinternet. Instead, the FBI set up clean servers to replace the ones that wererunning the scam, and victims have been redirected to those clean servers eversince, usually without any knowledge they’d been infected in the first place.
Originally the rescue serverswere to be active until March, but a court ruling extended the program untilJuly 9th. At that time the clean servers will be turned off andanyone who is still infected with the malware will lose their internet access.The FBI believes there are still about 360,000 infected computers in a dozencountries, including the U.S. and Canada.
For 100 years, Better Business Bureau has beenhelping consumers find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In2011, consumers turned to BBB more than 100 million times for Business Reviewson more than 4 million companies and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, allavailable for free at www.bbb.org. The Councilof Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for 116 local,independent BBBs across the United States and Canada, as well as home to its national programs on dispute resolution andindustry self-regulation.