As well as encrypting files on a victim’s computer, a new strain of ransomware threatens to contact the police about certain types of files if the system’s owner doesn’t pay a ransom of €3,000 ($3,686).
When trying to access the “encrypted” data, users get hit with a message that instructs them to send a unique ID number to an email address – in this case a Gmail or Live address – to obtain a password to unlock their files once they have paid the ransom.
However, the Troj/Ransom-HC Trojan will tell users if they don’t pay the ransom within 96 hours, the criminals will send a report to the police with a “special password” that will unlock files, said to contain spamming software and child pornography, on the system, said Sophos’ Graham Cluley.
While this threat, written in broken English, is likely to be an empty one, the criminals hope it will scare users into paying them quickly.
Cluley said as always, users should not to pay the ransom, noting that doing so could “simply raise their ransom demands even higher once they discover you are prepared to pay up.”