What Is the FBI Locked Computer Virus?

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The FBI locked computer virus, more commonly known as the FBI Virus or FBI Moneypak Virus, is a dangerous class of malware titled "ransomware," which impedes a user from accessing different parts of his computer. It locks his computer screen and displays a message, seemingly sanctioned by the FBI, that demands payment of a fine set at varying amounts. It is capable of infecting Windows and Apple computers alike.

According to Forbes, the virus has found its way into various computers, forcing innocent people to pay over $200 in an effort to comply with what they believe is a direct request from the FBI.

The virus accuses users of illegally viewing pornography or downloading copyrighted material from other websites. It uses intimidation to solicit payment. The user is asked to pay an FBI-imposed fine within 48 to 72 hours to release the computer from its hold or receive a key to decrypt the files that are under lock. Users are directed to purchase MoneyPak cards or other debit cards, and use the cards to make their fine payments. These cards are nearly impossible to trace.

The FBI Virus uses trojan horses, such as "Trojan.Ransomlock.R" and "Reveton," or scripts embedded in websites to infect computers.