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Credits: The Hindu

It spread through a wide area network, says top BSNL official

At least 60,000 BSNL broadband modems have become dysfunctional after a malware attack since Wednesday night across the Karnataka Telecom Circle.

Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL) is addressing the issue on a war footing since late Thursday. Customers across the State were unable to use Internet services, and their problem got worsened as BSNL employees were on a strike on Thursday.

According to R. Mani, chief general manager, BSNL, Karnataka Telecom Circle, modems supplied by three vendors — Syrma, Teracom and Supernet — have been affected. The malware attack came through the wide area network, he said.

Clarifying that the malware did not affect BSNL’s core network, he said instructions had been issued to all officials on procedure to rectify and reboot the modems. Some BSNL personnel were visiting homes of subscribers to address the problem, Mr. Mani told The Hindu. Mr. Mani said the company was also working on strengthening the firewall system which has been breached by the attacker.

The malware affected those models supplied or sold by BSNL to its customers and not the ones bought by customers from outside. It is said that only those modems whose login credentials, username and password, were not changed from ‘admin’ to personal ones by customers were affected.

BSNL engineers have been working to reset the modems even as customers who want the modems immediately functional are brining them to telephone exchanges, said an official at a telephone exchange in Mangaluru who was resetting the modem of MP Nalin Kumar’s office.

However, engineers were perturbed by the fact that the modems that were reset developed problem again once they were put into action on customers’ premises.

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