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I have a friend who has a linksys wireless router and is having problems with getting internet. Is there any way a wireless router can get a virus?

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I wouldn't have thought so. There are more likely reasons why there'll be connection problems. – ChrisF Feb 15 '11 at 0:08
Just wondering, what makes you suspect it is the router? Why not suspect the PC first? – Steve Feb 15 '11 at 0:13
Because there are many different PCs that are being affected. I personally don't think its the router its just that they were assuming it was the router so I wanted to disprove that first – chromedude Feb 15 '11 at 0:14
up vote 12 down vote accepted

While it's possible that a router can get a virus, it's very unlikely (in the realm of winning the lottery or falling off a donkey).

Your friend's router may need attention from a professional. Have the ISP check it out or see if you can get a replacement.

If you know what problems it's having, maybe we can help here. For that, we need a lot of information about the router and what you've tried.

EDIT: Resetting the router to factory defaults will eliminate any configuration issues or corruption (including alleged viruses), if you need to prove a point.

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ok, thanks that was what I was thinking I am going to look into some more things first but if I can't make any headway I will add more info. – chromedude Feb 15 '11 at 0:13
If you're trying to prove a point to your friend, do a hard reset and start from scratch. The reset will wipe it completely and eliminate any possible corruption of the firmware. – user3463 Feb 15 '11 at 0:16
@Randolph ah... thanks, forgot about that option, I will definitely do that. – chromedude Feb 15 '11 at 0:19
I agree with Randolph, just remember to backup the firmware before wiping it. Good luck. – Steve Feb 15 '11 at 0:21
I will have you know that falling off a donkey is incredibly easy. – Shinrai Feb 15 '11 at 15:26

While not technically a virus, router poisoning could occur. If a malicious agent gains access to a router, it could change the default DNS to a malicious server that can then redirect your traffic however it sees fit.

But like Randolph has stated, Resetting to factory defaults should eliminate any issues.

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+1 for mentioning DNS poisoning. – user3463 Feb 15 '11 at 8:57

We had that happen to our Linkseye wireless router yesterday when we went to hook up a friend's laptop to our router to look up problems they were having in linking to the internet.

It immediately affected all our connected devices and it would not allow us to get back online – only to the CISCO router site. The friend's laptop evidently reconfigured our router but we couldn't get it to go back to factory defaults. We tried to press reset and reinstall the CD but nothing would happen.

Talking to their tech support – it allowed online chat – they offered to correct it for a fee (because I had gone past their 90 day warranty) so we declined and went out and bought a different brand router and re-established internet connection.

I am currently trying to use Norton to clean anything which may have contaminated our devices – but how can this friend's laptop be cleaned? I will not try to hook it back up through our router system again.

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Welcome to SU - please post this as a separate question instead of tagging on to an existing question. Questions that have already had an answer accepted generally don't get much attention. – Li-aung Yip Jul 22 '12 at 3:39
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