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Ransomware': New Scam Poses as Feds and Cons Victims Into Paying Fine for Visiting Child Porn Site

Crime

A new scam dubbed "ransomware" is making its rounds on the Web, stating users have violated a federal law by accessing a child porn site -- even though they hadn't. It tricks users into paying a fine and revealing banking info in order "unlock" their computer.

According to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, the malware is installed on one's computer when visiting a "drive-by download site" (think clicking on a random pop-up) at which point it will freeze your computer and show you a message allegedly from U.S. Department of Justice stating your IP address has been identified by the Computer Crime & Intellectual Property Section as visiting child pornography and other illegal content.

To unfreeze their computer, users are told they can pay $100. In addition to taking this fine, the scam -- run by Citadel malware -- will also steal banking and credit card information as you access those sites.

Here is what the warning screen looks like:

What should you do if this happens to you? Don't click anything. Report the scam incidence here. Contact your banking institutions to ensure you are protected.

[H/T io9]

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