Source: PC Magazine

On July 9, computers infected with the Trojan program DNSChanger will no longer be able to access the Internet. DNSChanger affects both Windows and Mac computers.

The problem arises from Operation Ghost Click, an FBI takedown last November of a major Estonian cybercrime ring. The ring was suspected of using the Trojan to control more than four million computers in over 100 countries, including an estimated 500,000 in the United States.

As part of the November takedown, the FBI was authorized by the Court to deploy temporary DNS servers to serve as surrogates for the rogue DNS servers shut down as part of the FBI operation. The Court extended the Order in February until July 9 at which time infected computers will no longer be able to access the Internet.

If a computer is infected with DNSChanger, it may take intensive work to get rid of it. DNSChanger is a powerful rootkit, often immune to anti-virus programs. The safest course is to back up important data, reformat the computer’s hard drive(s), and reinstall the operating system and other applications.

In early February, Internet Identity estimated about 400,000 computers in the U.S. of the initial million were still infected. At least 94 of all Fortune 500 companies and three out of 55 major government entities had at least one computer or router that was infected with DNSChanger as of Feb. 23, according to IID. Updated numbers are currently unavailable.

The new deadline for getting cleaned up and averting the Internet blackout is now July 9. Users should immediately check their computers if they haven’t already done so.

Go here to check if your computer in infected.