Unless you were lucky enough to miss it on any of the major media outlets over the last few days (television, print and online), tech-savvy news watchers were warned at the top of every newscast about how Monday, July 9th was going to be “Internet Doomsday” or “Malware Monday” or some other horrifying sounding event that was going to cripple society as we know it.
Or something like that.
Let’s look at the facts: Back in November the FBI found out that a number of hackers created something called Operation Ghost Click, which was basically a scam that uses something called a DNSChanger to reroute the Internet browsing of infected computers to the wrong websites. So if your computer was infected and you went to type in the web address for ESPN.com, for example, you’d end up going to another site instead that downloads additional malware onto your computer or steals your information and generates money for these hackers.
When the FBI found out about this and shut down the hackers’ operation, they also realized that any infected users who didn’t know about it would no longer have access to the Internet, so what they did was continue to run backup servers on which infected computers could still function and surf the Web.
On Monday, the FBI was turning off those servers, which was going to leave upwards of 42,000 infected computers in the United States without the ability to get onto the Internet, which translates – of course – into INTERNET DOOMSDAY!!!1!1ONE1!!!
Wait. Let’s crunch some numbers here.
Four million computers were originally infected worldwide and since November only a mere 95% of them have been cleaned up. Out of an estimated 245 Million Internet users in the United States, 42,000 of them were going to be without the opportunity to look up porn this morning when they turned on their computers. That means there were going to be approximately 0.0017% of people who were going to be left with a severe case of blue balls thanks to Internet Doomsday.
Curse you, international hackers!!!
But wait a minute — let’s not fall so quickly for the media’s Chicken Little approach and put some of this into perspective before we run out for duct tape and bottled water.
Here is a list of some things that are affecting more than 42,000 Americans when they woke up this morning.
26.3 Million American people woke up living below the poverty line.
62.5 Million Americans woke up today with cavities
16 Million American children woke up hungry today without any promise of food
12.7 Million Americans woke up today without a job
11 Million Americans woke up today battling some form of Cancer
6.5 Million Americans are going to be subjected to Chris Berman broadcasting the MLB Home Run Derby
2.5 Million Americans woke up today with a gambling addiction
1.73 Million Americans will get on a plane today
70,000 people just in New Jersey lost power on 4th of July weekend due to severe weather
42,500 American girls between the ages of 15-19 are giving birth today
Now that we have some numbers to compare against, do you really think it’s a good idea to pay so much attention to something that affects only 0.0017% of Americans and can be fixed with a simple installation of anti-virus software?
Good. Glad you agree.
Now the media can return to more pressing matters, such as which celebrity athlete the new Kardashian baby is going to be dating in 19 years.