A virus that encrypts the victims’ files and demands a ransom in return for unlocking them is using a novel method to try and induce its victims to pay up — by promising that the money raised will go to charity.
CryptMix is what’s known as “ransomware,” rogue software that makes it impossible to access your data unless you cough up a ransom. It was first highlighted by a blogpost by security company Heimdal Security.
“Your money will be spent for the children charity,” the broken-English-message victims are greeted with says. “So that is mean that You will get a participation in this process too. Many children will receive presents and medical help!”
It even attempts to guilt trip the victim, claiming the money extorted is all for a good cause. “And We trust that you are kind and honest person! Thank You very much! We wish You all the best! Your name will be in the main donors list and will stay in the charity history!”
And the icing on the cake: The message is signed off with “Best regards, Charity Team.”
CryptMix asks for 5 bitcoin — around $2,300, or £1,600 — with the ransom doubling if the victim doesn’t pay up within 24 hours of infection.
We don’t know for sure that the claim the cash will go to “the children charity” is bogus. Perhaps these are some of the most conscientious hackers around! But let’s just say we’re dubious.