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Virus software that blackmails users by encrypting their hard drives or locking them out of the computer. It then demands payment to restore it. A favorite ploy is an FBI message claiming the user has child pornography on the computer, and a fine must be paid or else risk arrest. After paying the blackmail on any of these ransomware attacks, the user's machine may or may not be restored. Also known as a "cryptovirus" or "cryptotrojan."

In 2013, the creators of CryptoLocker collected millions in ransom by infecting Windows PCs until its distribution was halted a year later by the FBI and Interpol. CryptoLocker was the inspiration for other ransomware variants (gotta love that entrepreneurial spirit!).

Mobile Phones Too
In 2014, using the same FBI scare tactic, thousands of Android users found their phones locked with demands for payment. See scareware and wares.

FBI MoneyPak Ransomware
Imagine finding your computer frozen with an FBI alert saying you violated any one or more of video, music or software copyrights or you distributed child pornography. It demands that you put USD $200 cash into a MoneyPak card and enter the card number within 72 hours to unlock your computer and prevent the initiation of a criminal case.
References in periodicals archive ?
The hackers have been spreading viruses known as GOZeuS and CryptoLocker.
Discussing Cyber Essentials, David Willetts, universities and science minister said, "The recent GOZeuS and CryptoLocker attacks, as well as the Ebay hack, shows how far cybercriminals will go to steal people's financial details, and we absolutely cannot afford to be complacent.
Computers become infected with GameOver Zeus and secondary bug Cryptolocker after users open "phishing" emails.
e viruses, known as Gameover Zeus and CryptoLocker, have been temporarily disrupted, and authorities want the two-week period it will take them to recover to improve antivirus protection on the world's computers.
They observed "a new Cryptolocker Trojan that, unlike traditional ransomware, leaves system access intact but encrypts various documents and executables found on the system.
The sudden surge in the ransom form of attacks like Cryptolocker is directly associated with the capabilities of cryptocurrency as payment.
Washington, March 10 ( ANI ): Following the introduction of CryptoLocker, Ransomware has reportedly emerged as a potent threat to PCs around the world.
The recent cyber attack on the town of Greenland's IT infrastructure involving the so-called CryptoLocker ransom malware has highlighted the vulnerability of small organizations--municipal and otherwise--to such breaches.
Millions of rogue emails have been sent out to businesses and individuals containing an attachment that installs a piece of ransomware called Cryptolocker.
Petronella Technology Group has monitored all the latest developments in the battle against Cryptolocker and is pleased to include protection against this threat in its Managed Security Solution.
Ransomware virus CryptoLocker hit KEA earlier this year, causing the company's IT team to establish a new backup strategy that would deliver more convenient and faster offsite recovery in the event another disaster hit.
It contained a special-purpose, password-stealing version of ZeuS used to harvest saved passwords from popular software such as web browsers and it also loaded up CryptoLocker.

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