Q:

What is the Moneypak virus?

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Quick Answer

The Moneypak virus is a computer malware program that locks Windows and demands the owner pay a ransom in order to access his computer. It displays a screen with a false FBI warning about the use of the computer to view child pornography or illegally downloading copies of copyrighted files. According to PCTechGuide.com, it does not harm the owner's personal files on his computer.

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Full Answer

As of 2013, Forbes reports the ransom to the malware demands ranges from $200 to $400. The instructions include buying a Green Dot Moneypak from a local retailer such as Walmart. Moneypak cards allow the purchaser to add money to a prepaid credit card. The warning gives the user 48 hours to pay the ransom to rescue the computer.

There are several ways to remove the virus, but success depends on how deeply it embeds itself into the system. PCTechGuide.com recommends turning off the machine and rebooting, pressing the F8 key repeatedly until the device enters the safe mode and then manually removing the virus. Forbes reports success in removing it by using a system restore followed by using the machine's antivirus program. It offers other approaches through online remote services, major retailers' computer repair departments, or using a professional computer consultant or repair shop to have the virus removed. It does not recommend paying the ransom to the Moneypak website.

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