WASHINGTON -- For computer users, a few mouse clicks could mean the difference between staying online and losing Internet connections after early July.
The problem started when international hackers ran an online advertising scam to take control of infected computers around the world. In a highly unusual move, the FBI set up a safety net months ago using government computers to prevent Internet disruptions for those infected users. But that system will be shut down this summer.
The FBI is encouraging users to visit a website run by a security partner that will inform them whether they're infected -- and explain how to fix the problem. After July 9, infected users won't be able to connect to the Internet.
To check and clean computers, try: www.dcwg.org
When you access the site, click on "Detect" in the upper left corner, or on the Green Button next to it.
You will be directed to a new page. Pick your language from the list and click on the link next to it.
If your computer is not infected, you will see a green logo with the message: "DNS Resolution(equals)Green. Your computer appears to be looking up IP addresses correctly!"
If you see that message, you don't need to do anything more.
If you see a message with a red logo saying your computer appears to be infected, you will be directed to a new page. You will be directed to websites that will provide antivirus tools that cybersecurity experts have identified as being effective in removing the malware.
The website also provides information on the case and the malware.