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Is Monday “Internet Doomsday”?

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The virus is the result of DNSChanger – malicious software, known as malware – which has infected thousands of devices¬†despite the FBI’s previous attempts to shut it down.

The virus could result in thousands of PC users worldwide being blocked out from the Internet and will happen at 1pm AEST (12.01 EDT) Monday July 9th.

This is because the temporary solution to this malware developed by Internet Systems Consortium (ISC) is due to expire on Monday.

DNSChanger is a class of malicious software (malware) that changes a user’s Domain Name System (DNS) settings, enabling criminals to direct unsuspecting web users to fraudulent websites and interfere with their web browsing.

It has been associated with ‘click fraud’, the installation of additional malware and other malicious activities.

Security firm Deteque reckons about 245,000 computers worldwide are still affected, with over 45,000 of these said to be within the US, reports Reuters.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority said in March 10,000 Australian PCs were infected with this malware, but it appears just over 7,500 now are infected, although a DNS listing released on June 13 indicates 8518 were in fact infected with the malware.

Italy, India and Britain also have high infection rates according to a DNS Changer Working Group (DCWG) a group charged with trying to clean up the infected PCs using Rove Digital’s malicious DNS servers.

Infections by country, on June 13.

The FBI along with Estonia police arrested several cyber criminals (all Estonian) as part of “Operation Ghost Click” in November last and have charged seven suspects with “engineering sophisticated Internet fraud that infected millions of computers worldwide and manipulated Internet advertising business.”

The cyber crime was also a nice earner for the crims generating “at least” US$14 m in fraudulent advertising fees, according to US authorities

But despite the seriousness of the issue, some have the feeling they’ve heard it all before:

“On July 9,Doomsday is expected to kill internet access on infected computers.The traffic may be so light that Twitter will stop apologizing,” one amused Internet users tweeted.

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