If you are reading this on the day it was posted (Monday, July 9th, 2012), then you are likely not a victim of Malware Monday. Far from being as feared as something like the dreaded Y2K situation, Malware Monday revolves around a piece of malicious software known as DNSChanger and the efforts involved in the mitigation and ultimate ridding of this specific piece of malware.
DNSChanger functions on a couple of different fronts, though the fundamental result of infection would be an inability to connect to your ISP. It reportedly will also prevent your Operating System from downloading updates that would detect and prevent the malware from functioning.
Back in 2007, the creators of DNSChanger began using the trojan to redirect internet traffic to sites containing paid advertisements, resulting in illegal profit for its creators. Since then, the hackers evolved the malware to execute various other tasks on the infected machines. The FBI became involved and those responsible were caught and arrested late last year. Initially, the FBI wanted to shut down the servers that were being used by the hackers to control the infected computers, however it was determined that such action would have resulted in the infected machines immediately becoming unable to connect to the Internet.
The resulting decision was to implement a transitional system whereby the servers in question could be taken down without resulting in the infected machines from losing their Internet connectivity. The plug was pulled on that transitional system this morning around 12:01am, at which point anyone with an infected computer would need to rid their machine of the malware in order to re-connect to the Internet.
So, if you are reading this on Monday, July 9th, you were unaffected. If you were affected, then you’re likely seeing this at a later date and I’d like to welcome you back to the Internet (we missed you!) and invite you to regularly scan your computer(s) for any malicious software using any number of free or paid applications available today.