The Federal Bureau of Investigations recently issued a warning about a new scam circulating around the internet. According to the agency’s press release, the Reveton Ransomware virus infects computers when a user visits a compromised website.
According to the release, “Once installed, the computer locks up while displaying a warning that the FBI or the Department of Justice has identified the computer as being involved in criminal activity.”
Consumers are then provided instructions on how to pay a fine via a prepaid money service. In addition to promising to unlock a user’s computer if he or she pays the fine, the message warns of criminal prosecution for those who do not pay.
The FBI advises that federal authorities will never charge a fine to unlock a consumer’s computer. The message is a scam.
From the release: “Anyone falling victim to this scam is encouraged to file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center at http://www.ic3.gov. Even if users are successful in unlocking their computers, the malware may remain on the system and capture personal information, creating additional fraud risks. Victims may need to contact a computer professional to remove the malware from the infected computer.”