Chalk one up for the good guys.
Operation Ghost Click is being hailed by the FBI as the “biggest cybercriminal takedown in history.” A group of scumbags in Estonia using malicious software (or malware) called DNS Changer were arrested. They supposedly had control of more than four million computers worldwide!
The DNS Changer, as the name suggests, redirects the domain name system server settings on a computer to those of a bogus server. So your search in Google returns valid results, but when you click on Pepsi.com you get Perestroika.
Oh, and it’s a real PITA to uninstall.
The scammers made money by redirecting the Web browsers of infected computers, then hijacking revenue clicks and replacing legitimate advertisements with their own. American authorities estimate that the criminal take was over $14 million, all of it from online advertisers and publishers.
The company name used by the gang was Rove Digital, which was also one of the early investors in ChronoPay, a Russian payment processor whose principal founder is also in prison currently on cybercriminal charges.