Russian malware attack and what it means for TDS customers

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is asking more than 500,000 Americans to reboot their routers. This is because hackers infected consumer-level routers used in homes and small offices with malware. The incident is believed to be a Russian military-related hacking and has affected half a million routers and storage devices in 54 countries, including the United States.

This modular, multi-stage malware has been named “VPN Filter.” It is capable of monitoring what sites you’re visiting on the internet. Worse, it also includes a self-destruct feature that could render infected devices inoperable, cutting off user access to the internet.

Affected devices could include routers made by Linksys, MikroTik, Netgear, TP-Link, and one network-attached storage device from QNAP. The good news is that TDS’ Wireline Actiontec modems are not affected by this malware. However, if a customer has a third-party router behind the modem, that could still be vulnerable.

The FBI released a statement recommending that owners of home and small office routers reboot their devices to stop the virus from progressing into further stages of infection. According to a statement released by the Department of Justice, a reboot will give the government the ability to track communications sent by infected devices to help them “identify and remediate the infection worldwide.”



Guest Blogger: August Braun
August is a Communications Intern at TDS Telecom and a journalism student at UW-Madison.

About Guest Blogger

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