PC WORLD and other computer oriented Websites are constantly warning of new criminal threats to computers. And, of all of the newer known criminal threats to computers, the FBI Moneypack virus ransomware and some related ransomware scams are the most insidious and destructive of the bunch. Ransonware is designed to look for certain search engine terms or other clues from your computer browsing to target your computer with a phony FBI warning that you’ve been illegally downloading copyrighted material or computer software and your computer has been locked up by the FBI, and you must go to Walgreens or another listed retailer and purchase a $400 fine payment to the federal government, or else face felony criminal charges within 72 hours. Your computer is completely unusable after it has been locked up like this, only allowing you to pay this ransom to some crook, usually in Europe. It’s also not clear whether the crooks will even unlock your computer after you pay them their ransom money either. But, it’s a criminal scam that has absolutely nothing to do with the American government or the FBI. And the bad misspelled messages that these crooks often use to lock up your computer should prove this fact.

The fact of the matter is that some antivirus and antispyware programs like Norton and other popular systems don’t seem to always block these sort of attacks, which is very alarming. And a search to view perfectly legal videos on popular sites such as YouTube might even be all that it takes for this ransonware virus to search out your computer and render it useless if you use certain terms where it appears you are looking to download copyrighted material or other possible violations. Sometimes, even far less than this could trigger this virus.

This sort of virus does many damaging things to your computer, including turning off your antivirus protection. However, if you are able to do a scan of your computer, despite it being mostly disabled, you might have some success at removing the virus without professional help. Another method to remove this virus is to go to the front of your computer during startup, and attempt to roll back your computer to an earlier date before this ransomware was able to set up shop on your computer and deeply install itself into many computer functions.

Some ways to protect yourself from this virus are to be careful which Websites you visit. Staying with mainstream Websites like YouTube and others are generally fine, but be careful that your search terms don’t seem like you are looking to break someone’s copyright of material they own, and are not freely sharing either as a promotional advertisement or such. You should also be careful about popups that lead to other Websites that you didn’t search for in the first place. Some of these could contain something that might trigger this ransomware virus. But, no innocent search of the Internet is completely safe because of this virus. Just be sure to have the best possible antivirus software installed on your computer. And be careful that your searches are absolutely not looking to download copyrighted material or software for free. That’s illegal as well and could carry real law enforcement implications, not just some phony computer criminal operating out of Eastern Europe looking to steal your money. Pay for everything, like any software that you want to buy. Don’t look for illegal freebies. Some ransomware claims violations of the SOPA act which was never even passed by congress. So just the search alone for free software could catch you up in ransomware hell, triggering a ransomware lockdown of your computer. That’s no bargain at all. It pays to be an honest citizen.