Feeds

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

Crooks exploit those embarrassing files we all have

3 Big data security analytics techniques

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." ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Arts and crafts store Michaels says 3 million credit cards exposed in breach
Meanwhile, Target investigators prepare for long process in nabbing hackers
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.