The Canadian Anti Fraud Centre has been reporting an unusually high number of Scareware cases in Canada.

Apparently numerous PC users have been victimized by con artists claiming to be RCMP and/or CSIS officers, who demanded payment to clean the victims’ computers of child pornography and/or terrorism related material.

Like most scareware incidents, these begin with an unsolicited pop up message containing a warning of an infection that requires immediate attention, which appears on a victim’s computer screen whilst the victim is browsing the internet.

In this case, the victim is told they must send $100 or $250 via Ukash to unlock and clean their computer of the aforementioned illicit material. But there is of course no illicit material to remove on the victim’s computer.

When the victim clicks on the pop-up message, his or her computer is infected with malware, disabling access to the computer. But this infection can be avoided.

If you encounter this or a similar pop-up message :

  1. Do not click on the pop-up window.
  2. Close the browser via Task Manager or shut down your computer.

Enabling a pop-up blocker and regularly updating anti-virus software will prevent future occurrences.

Pop-up blockers have been implemented in all of the following browsers :

Chrome / Firefox / Internet Explorer 7 or 8 / Opera /Safari