Here’s why the FBI wants you to restart your router

The FBI is asking all owners of a router to restart it in an attempt to stop a computer attack from Russia.

In an announcement on May 25, the US Federal Police Service warns that malicious software called VPNFilter has infected many routers, both in homes and workplaces.

According to the FBI, VPNFilter would be able to intercept information that travels over the network to which the router is connected, block the network and even take control of some devices

The attack is allegedly linked to Sofacy, a Russian group that targets governments and military organizations, according to the United States Department of Justice .

The New York Times reports that Sofacy is suspected of being run by the Russian military intelligence agency by US and European government agencies. The same agencies believe that Sofacy would be behind the piracy of the American Democratic Party , which occurred before the 2016 presidential election.

How to defend against VPNFilter?

Shortly after the discovery of VPNFilter, the FBI and the US Department of Justice seized the domain used by Sofacy to control the network of infected devices.

This means that a simple reboot of the affected routers should be enough to neutralize the malware.

To restart your router, unplug the power cord from the unit for one minute, and then plug it back in again. That’s all!

If you want to secure your network further, it is highly recommended that you make sure that your router’s embedded software is up-to-date. To do this, go to your device manufacturer’s website, find your model page, and follow the instructions for updating.

The last step, which is of utmost importance, is to change the username and password used to control your router. The default credentials are easy to find on the Internet and leave your device vulnerable to attack. The information to change the credentials should also be on the manufacturer’s website of your router.

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