Call it the doomsday that wasn’t.
Thousands worried that they would lose Internet access after the Federal Bureau of Investigation pulled the plug Monday on a safety net set up to keep machines infected with a widespread virus online.
But like the Y2K bug before it, the aftermath from the ‘Internet doomsday’ virus passed with little incident.
The virus, called DNS Changer, sent computers to false sites by interfering with how they direct traffic; the FBI’s backup servers temporarily set things right while giving uses time to clean up their machines. Once it took the servers down, the FBI said, any computer still infected with the virus would be cut off from the Web.
In addition to setting up the system, the FBI also set a massive awareness campaign in motion. Businesses were among the first to offer quick fixes for their computers. Technology companies such as Google, Facebook and Microsoft helped with the task of reaching out to individual Web users. Internet service providers such as Comcast reached out to their customers though e-mail, mail and in-browser notifications.