A malware attack has swept the nation as internet users whose computers were infected by a malicious virus will be without internet by 12:01 a.m. EDT.
According to Fox News, FBI planned to shut down the Internet servers set up as a temporary safety net to keep infected computers online for the past eight months. The court order the agency obtained to keep the servers running expired, and it was not renewed. The malware attack occurred when international hackers ran an online advertising scam to take control of more than 570,000 infected computers around the world. When the FBI apprehended the hackers and their servers, they realized that if they shut the servers down, tens of thousands would be without internet.
The FBI decided to set up a safety net, where The bureau brought in a private company to install two clean Internet servers to take over for the malicious servers so that people would not suddenly lose their Internet. The FBI then hired a private company to run a website http://www.dcwg.org as a place where computer users could go to see if their computer was infected and find links to other computer security business sites where they could find fixes for the problem.
While the FBI efforts with the situation have been commendable, many conspiracy theories have surfaced questioning the government’s motive for the servers supplying internet to thousands, speculating that they are watching what the internet users are doing and invading their privacy. One computer user commented, “I think the FBI just wants everyone to go to that website to check our computers so they can check our computers as well. Just a way to steal data for their own research.”
Rep. Jim Langevin, D-R.I., and co-founder of Congress’ cybersecurity caucus, said its the computer user’s responsibility to be up to date with all the information and to take care of their product that holds a bountiful of their information, “These types of issues are only going to increase as our society relies more and more on the Internet, so it is a reminder that everyone can do their part.”
Currently, the FBI is tracking how many computers are still infected with this malware, and the numbers are still staggering. According to the FBI’s latest count on Wednesday, there were about 45,600 in the U.S. and roughly 250,000 worldwide infected computers.
What People Need to Know about a Malware Attack.