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Got pop-up ads? Your router could be infected

Got pop-up ads? Your router could be infected
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

If pornographic ads and other annoying pop-ups start showing up in your Web browser, you'll probably assume your computer is infected with a virus. But, that might not be true. The real culprit could be your Internet router.

Hackers are breaking into Internet routers and changing domain name server, or DNS, settings. A DNS server compiles lists of website names that match each IP address and translates the website you type in, like Komando.com, to a language your server can understand. By switching your DNS server to their own, hackers can potentially redirect you malicious sites without your knowledge or flood your computer with pop-ups on trustworthy websites.

In other words, you can visit an entirely legitimate and innocent website only to find that it is now peppered with additional adverts, helping the hackers earn income through affiliate schemes. In addition, the adverts displayed might be for content which the site would not normally think appropriate – such as adult webcam sites and pornographic content.

Next page: Find out how to protect yourself from this kind of attack
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