News From Terre Haute, Indiana

August 7, 2013

Vigo Sheriff warns of computer popup scam

Downloads a ‘Trojan’ virus

The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — The Vigo County Sheriff’s Department is warning the public of a new online popup scam that can deliver a computer virus via email.

The purported FBI popup message is really a “Trojan” virus in disguise that locks up computers as it attempts to obtain passwords and other financial information stored on the computer, according to a VCSD news release. It is also believed that the virus is capable of activating web cams installed on computers, giving the perpetrator a look inside a home.

The Reveton virus, or Ransomware, tries to trick people into clicking on it so the program can be downloaded, according to the news release.

The popup message cites copyright laws and criminal code violations and states that the user has done something illegal, such as downloading or distributing copyrighted material, viewing child pornography or distributing spam. The message demands payment of a fine using a MoneyPak card.

If the email message is received, it should be deleted, police advice. If a computer has been infected by the virus, the machine should be shut down and unplugged, and a computer expert may need to be consulted, the release said.