Many computers that get infected with viruses become part of something called a botnet, a network used to send out spam and spread viruses. One of the biggest was called Gameover Zeus, a network designed to steal banking and other sensitive information, which the FBI estimates caused $100 million in losses worldwide.
A few weeks ago, a multi-national law enforcement effort disabled Gameover Zeus and filed charges against one of the people alleged to be responsible for the botnet.
However, the malware and the risk still remains, as the Federal Trade Commission points out. If your computer is one of the 500,000-plus computers infected with the botnet software, you should take steps to remove it:
- Install and run security software that can find and remove Gameover Zeus.
- If your software finds malware, remove it and restart your computer.
- Change passwords for important accounts like your bank and email accounts.
- Make sure your operating system and Internet browsers are up to date and set them to update automatically.