According to a number of overseas reports, Internet industry heavyweights are trying to fix a flaw in the foundation of the Internet that could allow hackers to control traffic on the worldwide web.
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The reports note that several “major software and hardware makers worked in secret for months to create a software patch released overnight to repair the problem, which is in the way computers are routed to web page addresses.
The flaw would be a boon for bank phishing cons that involve leading people to imitation web pages of businesses such as bank or credit card companies to trick them into disclosing account numbers, passwords and other information.
According to a recent Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) report survey released last week, 453,100 Australians lost on average AU$2,160 each as a result of personal fraud, which included online phishing.
Attackers could use the vulnerability to “route Internet users wherever they wanted no matter what website address was typed into a web browser”, the report notes.
DNS is used by every computer that links to the internet and works similar to a telephone system routing calls to proper numbers, in this case the online numerical addresses of websites.
Automated updating should protect most personal computers. Microsoft released the fix in a software update package overnight and most importantly, the patch can’t be reverse engineered by hackers.