Saturday, January 05, 2008

[The Chosun Ilbo, December 14 2007] Beware of Ransomware, PC Users Told

Korean PC users have been warned of malware that encrypts data belonging to an individual on a computer and demands a ransom to restore it. IT security firm Ahnlab said Thursday a growing number of victims were reporting ransomware that hijacks their video files and demands payment in exchange for their restoration. The ransomware encrypts files on the victim's computer which the victim is then unable to open without the correct decryption key. Only when the ransom demanded is paid is the victim given the decryption key.

The ransomware was included in adware “Uccplay.” Victims are led into thinking the adware is a multimedia player, but when they install it, the program copies all video files stored on the computer to a hidden folder and removes the original files. Victims have no choice but to open the ransomware to access their video files, which then opens up a “certification” box that actually links to mobile phone payment.

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