Feeds

Fake cop Trojan 'detects offensive materials' on PCs, demands money

Crooks exploit those embarrassing files we all have

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Security firms are warning about a rash of police-themed ransomware attacks.

The Reveton Trojan warns victims that illegal content has supposedly been detected on infected machines, displaying a message supposedly from local police agencies demanding payment to unlock machines.

To unlock an infected machine, marks are invited to purchase a Paysafecard and pay €100 to obtain an unlock code. But in reality users need not hand over any dosh to regain control of their PCs. Control of infected machines can be established by following a few simple steps, as outlined in a blog post by F-Secure here. Similar recovery instructions from Microsoft can be found here.

Cybercrooks are obviously hoping that victims will be panicked into complying with their demands without seeking external help.

"Even when somebody is savvy enough to recognise the message is a fake, the malware's accusations of offensive materials having been discovered on the user's hard drive creates a chilling effect, which has likely prevented some folks from seeking outside help," the Finnish security firm notes.

Trend Micro reckons some of the people peddling the Reveton Trojan were also involved in the high-profile DNSChanger Trojan scam, the target of a successful Microsoft takedown operation last November.

"The same people peddling this Trojan are also heavily involved in other malware and are very invested in this business," writes David Sancho, a senior threat researcher at Trend Micro. "For instance, we have found that they were affiliates of the DNSChanger Trojan program called Nelicash that Rove Digital was sponsoring for a few years.

"The main persons behind Rove Digital were arrested on November 8 2011 after a two year investigation by the FBI, the NASA Office of the Inspector General and Estonian police in collaboration with Trend Micro and other industry partners. So we might have found an important clue who is behind the police Trojan." ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
You really need to do some tech support for Aunty Agnes
Free anti-virus software, expires, stops updating and p0wns the world
Regin: The super-spyware the security industry has been silent about
NSA fingered as likely source of complex malware family
You stupid BRICK! PCs running Avast AV can't handle Windows fixes
Fix issued, fingers pointed, forums in flames
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Patch NOW! Microsoft slings emergency bug fix at Windows admins
Vulnerability promotes lusers to domain overlords ... oops
HACKERS can DELETE SURVEILLANCE DVRS remotely – report
Hikvision devices wide open to hacking, claim securobods
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Go beyond APM with real-time IT operations analytics
How IT operations teams can harness the wealth of wire data already flowing through their environment for real-time operational intelligence.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.