Scareware News, Articles and Updates

FTC cracks down on new phone "scareware" ring


The assets of several companies were frozen in a move to halt ongoing tech support scams, primarily operating out of India.

Final "scareware" defendant to pay $163M to FTC


The $163 million ruling by a Maryland federal judge addresses the final defendant of a rogue anti-virus ring first contested in 2008.

Feds issue alert on Reveton ransomware resurgence


The criminals behind the Reveton malware are using fake FBI scare tactics to entice victims.

Citadel trojan uses child porn scare to extort cash


The banking trojan Citadel now is being used to trick users into believing they have violated U.S. law and must pay a fine to unfreeze their computers,

Symantec accused of selling "scareware"


In a lawsuit filed on Tuesday, a resident of Washington state sued the company over allegations that it scares customers into purchasing its products, even when unnecessary.

FTC to pay millions to consumers duped by scareware


The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will partially recoup some 300,000 people who fell victim to a scam in which they purchased rogue anti-virus products to fix problems that didn't exist.

FBI breaks up two international scareware rings


The FBI, with the help of international partners, has broken up two criminal rings believed to be responsible for peddling scareware, federal prosecutors announced Wednesday.

Con artists pose as security companies in growing scam


Scareware has taken on a human face. Criminals posing as computer security engineers are having success in calling victims at home and stealing their money, according to a survey issued Thursday by Microsoft. Fifteen percent of 7,000 computer users polled in the United States, Canada, U.K. and Ireland said they have been been contacted by a phone scammer, and 22 percent of those were tricked into following the fraudsters' directions, which included giving them remote access to a computer or providing credit card information. Seventy-nine percent of those suffered a financial loss as a result. Victims were out an average $875 in the United States, the survey found.

Apple distributes update for scareware protection


Apple on Tuesday released a Mac OS X security update to automatically find and remove rogue anti-virus (AV) software known as scareware. The update contains two "file quarantine" capabilities, as well as a "malware removal" functionality. Ongoing rogue AV scams targeting the Mac OS X, the most popular of which is MacDefender, have grown increasingly nefarious in recent days, leading to a significant uptick in infections. The malware aims to trick users into believing their systems are infected so they purchase phony AV products.

Supporters club

We all know about fake anti-virus, but fake support desk scammers are also making loads of money.

Masterminds of far-reaching scareware scam charged


A trio of men have been indicted for their alleged role in a highly profitable, Ukraine-based "scareware" scheme that tricked unwitting users into purchasing more than one million fake anti-virus programs, resulting in an estimated $100 million in losses to victims.

BitTorrent users targeted in new trojan extortion ploy


Security experts warned on Monday that attackers are targeting users of BitTorrent, a file-sharing application, in a novel scam that attempts to panic them into spending cash to avoid fines and imprisonment.

Rogue AV scam targets Google users


An ongoing attack on Google users is sending victims to rogue AV software sites, according to researchers at eSoft's Threat Prevention Team.


Sign up to our newsletters