FBI urges internet users to reboot router

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If you have an internet router in your home, the FBI says you should reboot it immediately.

They say hackers have compromised hundreds of thousands of routers with malware, meaning the hackers can collect your personal information.

So how can you protect your family and business?

Routers connect your devices to the internet. Whenever you’re surfing the web online, everything you do goes through your router. That’s why it’s important to take action.  

Anyone with a router is pretty much a potential target.

“Some people might experience slowness of internet browsing that’s beyond normal, that’s a clear indication that you might really want to reset your router immediately,” said Tim Caminos of SuperGeeks. 

The malware has the ability to collect your information, exploit your device, and block network traffic.

“If you think about it data is the most valuable thing in the world right now,” said Caminos. “You can target people with it, you can bring down organizations.” 

Routers targeted include: Linksys, Mikrotik, Netgear, QNAP, and TP-Link

The FBI says, “the size and scope of the infrastructure impacted by VPNFilter malware is significant.”

“As technology progresses you are going to see these more often. The good news is we catch it a lot faster,” said Caminos. 

By rebooting your router, you will temporarily break the hacker’s connection. 

“What this does is it actually helps the FBI to determine whose devices were impacted or affected,” he said. “If you really want to be secure, the smartest thing to do is actually factory reset your router. On most devices there’s a little button that you can push with a pencil or a paper clip, hold it down for about 10 seconds, return it to factory settings and that will wipe it out.”

For added protection, Caminos suggests using strong passwords. The longer and more difficult it is the better. 

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