On October 4, 2012, Todd Lindgren, a Public Affairs Specialist, made a special announcement to all residents in central and southern Ohio. The announcement was made because residents in the central and southern parts of the state are still reporting that their computers are becoming infected by a virus called the Reveton ransomware virus.
The virus can install itself on a person’s computer when the internet user travels to a certain website. Once the virus is downloaded, the computer will lock and show a message that states the FBI or Department of Justice has identified the computer as engaging in illegal activities under federal law. Further instructions state the internet user needs to send a prepaid money card to have the machine unlocked or they will face criminal prosecution.
The FBI reminds the public that this message is a virus and internet scam used to extort money. The FBI never sends messages that request money. Even though the FBI has issued previous warnings, the FBI Cincinnati Division is still receiving complaints about the virus.
If you believe your computer has been infected with the virus, you need to take the following steps:
• Do not send any money or provide any personal information
• Contact a professional right away and have the malware and virus removed from your computer
• If you can unfreeze your computer, you still need to contact a professional right away because malware can hide in the background and steal personal information like user names, passwords, financial information, and more
• Make sure to file a complaint at www.ic3.gov and keep updated on the Reveton virus on the same website
If you want more information about this scam and other scams, you can visit the Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov.
Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation