by Minh D. Tran
Yesterday, I couldn’t open Google Search Page. Everything I do on my computer revolves around Google. At first, I thought it was just a one-time thing so I tried to refresh my page. Over and over again, the page still didn’t load and keep returning an error. I tried to google my problem to look for help but my google was down (of course). So I had to use Yahoo Search. That wasn’t working either. None of my search engines were working, but all other websites that I go on worked. It was the weirdest thing.
I went to work today and tried to load Google.com and it worked. So I tried to find out what was wrong. It turned out my computer was infected with a trojan. Qhost trojan, spread by infectious websites, a trojan that changes your DNS settings and redirects your web browser to a website of its choice.
According to www.techtarget.com, “Once on a system, QHost first removes aolfix.exe. It also changes the DNS mapping for the computer, so all requests are routed through IP addresses determined by the Trojan’s author. It also redirects popular search URLs such as google.com and altavista.com to a search site of the author’s choosing.
“Users of infected systems may not even realize they have it. When they browse, their DNS requests will be returned but they will also get “a whole bunch of pornography and gambling pop-ups,” said Russ Cooper, surgeon general at TruSecure Corp.
“The Trojan does pose a privacy risk to users, because its author can obtain a record of what pages were requested. Also, the Trojan could cause problems for companies that block outbound DNS requests. Since the Trojan routes such requests outside of the company, users lose Web access.”
So there you have it. So then I quickly updated my virus software and scanned my PC. To my surprise it didn’t find anything. I decided to download Windows Defender, a spyware by Microsoft. The trojan was detected and deleted.
So now my search pages worked again, and I’m happy.