If you own a computer that runs the Windows operating system, you might want to log on to the website of the FBI's cyber-security partner to run a simple check on your computer.
The system check, which takes only seconds, determines if your computer is infected with a piece of "malware" called DNS Changer, which reroutes your computer's requests for Internet access to rogue servers that have allowed cyber-thieves to skim millions of dollars last year.
Last November, the FBI broke up the hacker ring that had perpetrated this scam, which stretched to nearly 600,000 machines, and realized that if they shut down the operation there'd be hundreds of thousands for whom the Internet suddenly wouldn't work.
The FBI set up servers to intercept Internet requests and reroute them correctly, so users wouldn't see a disruption, but they're shutting them down on July 9. If your computer is affected by the DNS Changer malware, it won't connect to the Interneat after that date.
So log on to the security website to check your machine. If the test comes back "positive," there's a button you can click to remove DNS Changer from your computer.
For more information on DNS Changer and the FBI's operation, see this recent story in the Hartford Courant.
Have you ever been victimzed by computer malware? Was it so bad you had to throw in the towel and buy a new machine? Tell us in the comments!