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  1. Akshay Masand's Avatar

    Malwarebytes recent took a look at a method that cyber-criminals have begun using to target Mac users with “ransomware,” hijacking the user’s browser with a notice demanding the payment of $300 in order to release control of the application. Although similar malware has affected Windows systems for a number of years, Mac users have only rarely seen such efforts targeting themselves. Malwarebytes mentioned the following regarding the issue:

    The ransomware page is being pushed onto unsuspecting users browsing regular sites but in particular when searching for popular keywords.

    Warnings appearing to be from the FBI tell the victim: “you have been viewing or distributing prohibited Pornographic content.. To unlock your computer and to avoid other legal consequences, you are obligated to pay a release fee of $300.”
    Instead of utilizing a sophisticated hijack of the actual browser software or an installation of a trojan, the ransomware is a simple webpage using JavaScript to load 150 iframes that require confirmation to be dismissed, with the authors hoping that users will give up long before they dismiss the dialog boxes and simply pay the ransom. As noted by the report, the feature on OS X that reopens previously open windows after relaunching an app means that users generally cannot simply close and reopen Safari in order to escape the issue.

    The report continued by detailing a working method to escape the ransomware involving resetting Safari but misses a far simpler tactic: Simply holding down the Shift key while relaunching Safari will prevent it from reopening windows and tabs from the previous session. Users can also disable the reopening feature across OS X from the General pane of System Preferences. All of the tactics, albeit being easy, may be confusing to those who are unfamiliar with the options. The report notes that the ransomware creators are looking to target users based on popular search terms, with one example being an image search result for Taylor Swift on Bing.

    Have you been affected by such issues or know of someone who has?

    Source: Malwarebytes (blog)

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand
    2013-07-17 02:00 AM
  2. steve-z17's Avatar
    Unfortunately people will fall for this...
    2013-07-17 03:41 AM
  3. *T*'s Avatar
    Simply go to the status bar, click Safari, click "Reset Safari", check the box on the bottom that says "Close all Windows", and you're done. You can use it to escape those sites with the infinite "dont leave" messages.
    2013-07-17 02:56 PM