Newsletters
The Enterprise Security Supersite NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Network Security Viruses & Malware Cybercrime Security Solutions More Topics...
Computing
24/7/365 Network Uptime
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
FBI Shuts Down DNSChanger Malware Servers
FBI Shuts Down DNSChanger Malware Servers

By Mark Long
July 9, 2012 1:56PM

Bookmark and Share
"Efforts to spread the word about the effects of shutting down the DNSChanger servers have hopefully made an impact," said security researcher Vikram Thakur. However, Thakur said "there is still an estimated 260,000 computers that will be affected" by Monday's shutdown. There was no outcry when the FBI pulled the plug on DNSChanger servers.
 

Related Topics

DNSChanger
FBI
Hackers
Virus


The FBI's shutdown at 12:01 AM Eastern Time Monday of servers supporting DNSChanger malware has not resulted in a huge outcry from Internet users worldwide.

Vikram Thakur, the principle security response manager at Symantec, told us that the impact of switching the replacement DNS servers off was "in line with what we expected."

"People with affected computers are less likely to publicize their network outage," Thakur said. "Instead, they'll be communicating with their local ISPs or computer technicians over the next several days or weeks."

According to the non-profit DNS Changer Working Group (DCWG), the malware works in tandem with DNS servers operated by cyber-criminals around the world. Given that all Web connections begin with DNS, DNSChanger makes it possible for criminals to deliver fake and malicious answers to search queries as well as direct the users of infected machines to fraudulent Web sites promoting bogus or even dangerous products.

"Efforts to spread the word about the effects of shutting down the DNSChanger servers have hopefully made an impact," Thakur said. However, Thakur also noted that DCWG's data indicates "there is still an estimated 260,000 computers that will be affected" by Monday's shutdown.

Prepping the DNS Server Shutdown

Last November, the FBI began operations against the cyber criminals running the rogue servers that support the DNSChanger malware. Since then, the bureau's cyber division has been working with the non-profit DCWG organization to operate temporary clean DNS servers.

The DCWG also established a Web site for hosting the detection tools that consumers needed to determine whether their machines are infected with a DNS changing virus such as TDSS, Alureon, TidServ or TDL4. The Web site provides consumers with infected machines with the directions for how to remove any of these viruses.

These preparatory steps helped pave the way for Monday's DNS server shutdown, according to the FBI.

"We've been using the last eight months to go out and clean up the infected computers, but we don't have everybody," said Thomas Grasso, a supervisory special agent at the FBI's cyber division.

Removing the Threat

Under the plan developed by the FBI and non-profit DNS Changer Working Group (DCWG), all the remaining infected PCs were to receive an "ICMP Unreachable" message beginning Monday morning. Thakur noted that Symantec's products do detect and remove the DNSChanger malware -- and non-Symantec customers can use Norton Power Erase to remove the threat -- but Symantec's security software cannot change the DNS configuration settings of infected machines.

"This is because there is no way for us to know the correct settings for each individual computer," Thakur said. "Users' ISPs should be able to walk them through correcting their settings. Alternatively, users can go to [the DCWG.org Web site] to see if they are affected by the issue and then follow the links describing how to correct their settings."

On the other hand, F-Secure reported Monday that some major Internet service providers appear to have configured their own substitute DNS servers that allow infected users on their systems to continue to access the Web -- even as these ISPs attempt to work out a final solution for the DNSChanger botnet problem.

"The FBI is out -- and ISPs are in," said F-Secure Security Labs blogger Mikko Hypponen. "All in all, things are working out as they probably should in a case such as this. The infection count continues to decrease without a major crisis in [ISP] support calls."
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:





 Computing
1.   Canada Says China Hacked Gov't
2.   MacBook Pros Get Update, Price Cut
3.   Cloud Wars: AWS vs. Microsoft, IBM
4.   Salesforce App Personalizes the Sale
5.   Watson's First Consumer-Facing Gig


advertisement
Backlash Stirs Against H-1B Visas
Debate over foreign workers continues.
Average Rating:
Amazon Intros Zocalo Storage Service
Online storage and sharing for business.
Average Rating:
Salesforce App Personalizes the Sale
New CRM and sales automation tools.
Average Rating:


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Canadian Government Charges China With Cyberattack
The government of Canada is not happy with China. Canadian officials have accused "a highly sophisticated Chinese state-sponsored actor" of launching a cyberattack on its National Research Council.
 
Researchers Working To Fix Tor Security Exploit
Developers for the Tor privacy browser are scrambling to fix a bug revealed Monday that researchers say could allow hackers, or government surveillance agencies, to track users online.
 
Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
Hacked again. That’s the story at the Wall Street Journal this week as the newspaper reports that the computer systems housing some of its news graphics were breached. Customers not affected -- yet.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Apple Updates MacBook Pros, Cuts Prices Up to $100
The popular MacBook Pro laptop line just got an update and a price cut of as much as $100. The MacBook Pro with Retina display now includes faster processors and double the memory.
 
Watson Gets His First Customer Service Gig
Since appearing on Jeopardy, IBM's Watson supercomputer has been making a living using his super-intelligent knowledge base for business verticals. Now, Watson's been hired for his first customer service job.
 
Tablet Giants Apple and Samsung Feel the Heat
When a company saturates its home market with a once-hot product, expect it to pump up efforts elsewhere. Apple, for its part, is now pushing iPads to big corporations and the enterprise market.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Android 'Fake ID' Puts Millions of Users at Risk
Having this fake ID is nothing to brag about, even if you are a minor. The “Fake ID” Android flaw drops malware into smartphone apps. It can steal credit card data and even take over your device.
 
FTC Wants Fix for 'Perfect Scam' of Mobile Cramming
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has issued new guidelines to curb “mobile cramming,” a troublesome practice that adds unauthorized third-party charges to mobile phone bills.
 
Facebook: You Will Use Messenger, and You Will Like It
Starting this week, Facebook users with Android and iOS phones will be forced to use the separate Messenger app to send Facebook messages. Pending messages will still be visible in the main app.
 

Navigation
Enterprise Security Today
Home/Top News | Network Security | Viruses & Malware | Cybercrime | Security Solutions | Mobile Security | Disaster Recovery | Windows Security
Data Security | EST Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.