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New scareware holds users’ data hostage, demands $50

Security researchers warned that a new scareware duping users into downloading a file utility that holds users’ data for ransom. It uses a Trojan horse that seeds by running a file that poses as legitimate software update. Once on the PC, it starts encrypting documents: Microsoft Word, Adobe Reader, also scrambles the files in Windows’ “My Documents” folder.

When a user open one of the encrypted files, an alert pops up: “Windows detected that some of your MS Office and media files are corrupted. Click here to download and install recommended file repair application”. Clicking alert downloads and installs FileFix Pro 2009 utility, that decrypt only one of the corrupted files for free, and then demands the user purchase the software. Price? $50.

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