Google+

‘limited’ Impact As FBI Net Is Shut Off

More than 300,000 people, including many in the US and UK, may have lost net access as the FBI shuts down servers used by cyber thieves.

The FBI seized the servers in November 2011 during raids to break up a hi-tech gang who used the DNS Changer virus to infect more than four million victims.

Victims’ web searches were routed through the servers so they saw adverts that led to the gang being paid.

Many machines still harbour the gang’s malicious code.

Global clean up

Since the computers were seized the FBI has kept them going with the help of Californian company ISC.

Over the last few months, the FBI has worked with many ISPs and security firms to alert victims to the fact that their PC was infected with DNS Changer. Online tools are available that let people check if they are infected.

The servers were finally switched off at 1201 EDT (0401 GMT) when the court order the FBI won to keep the computers going expired.

The result could be that people have lost net access because PCs that are still victims of DNS Changer now have nowhere to go when they need to look up the location of a particular domain such as bbc.co.uk.

Continue reading the main story

Top 10 DNS Changer infections

  • US – 69,517
  • Italy – 26,494
  • India – 21,302
  • UK – 19,589
  • Germany – 18,427
  • France, 10,454
  • China – 10,304
  • Spain – 10,213
  • Canada – 8,924
  • Australia – 8,518

However, it might take some time for the problems to become apparent, said Sean Sullivan, a security researcher at F-Secure.

“Initially some domains will be cached which will mean web access will be spotty,” he said. “People will be confused about why some things work and some do not.”

Other security experts said the remaining infected machines may harbour the malware for some time to come.

“Reaching victims is a very hard problem, and something we have had issues with for years,” said Johannes Ullrich, a researcher with the Sans security institute.

He expected the impact to be “minimal” because many of these systems were no longer used or maintained.

Early reports suggest the turn off had not caused any problems. South Korea was one of the first geographies that could have suffered the effects.

“The impact will be limited,” said Lee Sang-hun, head of network security at the country’s Communications Commission. Statistics gathered by the DNS Changer Working Group (DCWG) suggest only a few thousand machines were at risk of losing access in Korea.

The DCWG said the largest group of machines still harbouring the infection were in the US but many other nations, including Italy, India, the UK and Germany, had substantial numbers checking in with the ISC servers.

Some ISPs in the US put in place “technical solutions” in place that would direct people towards sources of aid.

At its height, DNS Changer racked up more than four million victims. This has been whittled down to just over 300,000, said the DCWG.

The gang racked up more than $14m (£9m) by hijacking web searches and forcing victims to see certain adverts. They managed to do this because their servers were taking over a key web function known as domain name look-up.

Domain names are the words humans use, such as bbc.co.uk, for websites. These are converted into the numerical values that computers use by consulting domain name servers (DNS).

When a person types a name into a browser address bar, often their computer will consult a DNS server to find out where that website resides online.

Source:BBC /

Entertainment

Best Picture Nominated WWII Biopic Arriving on DVD

  Hacksaw Ridge DVD Review by Kam Williams Best Picture Nominated WWII Biopic Arriving on DVD     Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield) was born in the Blue Ridge Mountains where he was raised as a Seventh-day Adventist. Devoutly religious, he followed his faith's literal interpretation  of the 10 Commandments, including the 5th's dictate that "Thou shalt not kill." So, when he rushed to enlisted in the Army right after the Japanese sneak … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

The President’s Kitchen Cabinet

  The President's Kitchen Cabinet The Story of the African-Americans Who Have Fed Our First Families, from the Washingtons to the Obamas by Adrian Miller University of North Carolina Press Hardcover, $30.00 292 pages, Illustrated ISBN: 978-1-4696-3253-7 Book Review by Kam Williams “[This opus] vividly tells the stories of the African-Americans who worked in the presidential food service as chefs, personal cooks, butlers, stewards … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the days of pain, the days of sorrow. We are in mourning. The sky looks down and sheds its tears for … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

History Being Sold to the Highest Bidder

  History Being Sold to the Highest Bidder by Amy Lignor   For the longest time, scientists and archaeologists have been confused and bemused by various discoveries they’ve unearthed that offer little or no explanation as to the who, what, and why of the people who created these things or left them behind. Even now, in 2017, there are discoveries being studied; stories that were once legends now have actual bits of proof being found that … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

Trump and Traditions of the Founders

  Trump and Traditions of the Founders By Ezrah Aharone Maybe I should watch more CNN or MSNBC to be convinced since most Black people seemingly regard Donald Trump as some sort of abrupt political mutation who violates America’s traditions. What I see in Trump is “America’s traditional reflection in the mirror.” I see the exact same hardline and hostile government that the founders deliberately engineered with deep political and racial … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Skeeter Recognized Again for Excellence in Customer Satisfaction

  Skeeter Recognized Again for Excellence in Customer Satisfaction    Skeeter, a leader in performance fishing boats, announced today from the Miami International Boat Show® that the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA®) has again recognized Skeeter with a CSI Award for excellence in customer satisfaction in the Freshwater Fiberglass Outboard Boat category. This year’s award is the fifteenth consecutive for Skeeter, an … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

Super Bowl LI’s Message: Patriotism

  Super Bowl LI’s Message: Patriotism by Amy Lignor   There are some people waking up this morning completely stunned. Why? Because they shut the Super Bowl off after the third quarter. They knew what was “going to happen” and had to go to work today, so why bother staying up and watching the rest of what was going to be an obvious blow-out? Besides, they had been given some memorable commercials, a great country western singer ushering … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Mobile Phone Forecast: Is Saturation of the Market in Sight?

  Mobile Phone Forecast: Is Saturation of the Market in Sight? by Amy Lignor   It is a fact that when people say no matter where they look – whether it be while walking down a neighborhood sidewalk, driving in their cars, shopping at the grocery store – it seems that everyone on the planet is holding a phone to their ear, or staring down at the screen in order to text, get information, search online, or watch Facebook and Twitter … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

It’s Time to Save for Summer Vacation!

  It’s Time to Save for Summer Vacation! by Amy Lignor   Putting the “pennies in the piggy bank” is something everyone in this world does (or wants to do) on a daily basis. But NOW is the time to take those “extra” pennies and purchase that great piggy bank that’s perhaps wearing some sunglasses, a colorful hat, some swim trunks…anything that makes that new piggy remind you of the one thing you want to do all year long – go on the … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden

  Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden by Amy Lignor   Many are still dealing with that wintery mix Mother Nature just loves to toss down from the sky this time of year. Yet, that gardener living inside the soul – the one just dreaming of the sunny skies and lazy rainy days that are must-haves in order to grow the best vegetables possible – is already jotting down the facts, tricks and tips they need to know in order to make that … [Read More its Good for You...]