Ransomware is a malicious program that can gain unauthorized access to your system settings and limit computer usability by encrypting files or preventing access to programs.
Ransomware programs usually demand that the user pay a fee in order to free their computer for normal usage. However, even if the ransom is paid, it is not guaranteed that the program will release the computer!
Some forms of ransomware are known as “Scareware” – the goal of scareware is to frighten the user into paying a ransom.
Common examples of ransomware/scareware tactics include intimidating the user by making them think they have broken the law and need to pay the ransom in order for their computer to be released.
Some programs actually tell you that the computer is infected and that you need to install a specific type of software that will fix this. This software is likely malicious and is known as a “Rouge Anti-Spyware” program. This type of malicious software can have several side-effects; It can tell you that your computer is infected with something it isn’t, restrict access to programs or even infect your computer with more malware!
Ransomware, scareware and rogue anti-spyware are examples of internet fraud and theft. They should never be accepted or tolerated!
If you’re infected with ransomware, you can find suitable rescue disks online on another computer that can fix the problems!
If you are a victim of fraud, please visit Action Fraud via the link provided, or contact your local police department.