Friday, March 7, 2008
The MonaRonaDona Extortion Scam
Online tech support forums are starting to light up over an increasing number of PCs sickened by something called the "MonaRonaDona virus," a piece of malware that threatens to trash host computers. As it happens, MonaRonaDona appears to be a relatively innocuous invader that was created to scare people into purchasing a fake new anti-virus product.
I first read about MonaRonaDona in a discussion thread over at the excellent DSL Reports Security Forum, where members traded tips on removing the bugger. Nobody seems to know how the thing wiggles into infected PCs in the first place, but the one thing that's clear is that this invader's primary purpose is to call as much attention to itself as possible (that kind of behavior is always a red flag, because most modern malware succeeds by being stealthy and unobtrusive). This piece of malware disables a number of programs on the victim's PC, changes the title of each Internet Explorer Window to include its name, and pops up the warning shown in the adjacent screenshot. [...]
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Brian Krebs on Computer Security. The Washington Post Company.