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14 July 2010, 09:55

Scareware: now with live support

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VIrus Teaser Nicolas Brulez of Kaspersky has discovered that scareware distributors are now offering actual live support. Users installing fake anti-virus software Security Master AV and clicking on the 'Online Support' button are directed to a chat window in which they can put questions directly to the scareware 'vendor'. Debora Brown, Kendra Grace and David Lee appear to have all the time in the world online to convince victims in fluent English that their software is genuine and to get them to install the bogus full product. Alternatively, victims can call them up, or send an email.

As a special titbit, the 'support team' offers a one-day trial version of the full product, which reliably removes the imaginary malware identified by the 'demo' version from the user's system. Brulez was even offered an uninstaller for the Security Master software, but this left behind a number of files.

Brulez thinks the extra-helpful scareware distributor is located in Russia or the Ukraine. Information on recognising scareware and on the dangers it poses can be found in the article "Rogue anti-virus products" on The H Open. The FBI recently charged three men accused of extracting around $100 million from internet users in more than 60 countries.

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