The Department of Justice (DOJ) is nothing more than a virus that belongs to the group of infections called Ransomware. The name for it came from the feature characteristic to all of this type infection. It demands for a ransom in order to remove the problems it causes. Although there is a lot of talking going on about computer attacks like this one, people still fall for this scam and give away their money to cyber criminals. The amounts are not that small, e.g. DOJ virus asks for a ransom of 300 USD. Let’s have a more detailed look at this infection and the methods it uses to swindle peoples’ money away.
Cyber criminals use sophisticated methods for spreading The Department of Justice virus. No wonder that the same computer might get infected with it more than once. The most common nowadays way of injecting this ransomware is via corrupted websites. These do not necessary have to be of a suspicious origin, like sex sites. Scammers use such web pages like job search or similar.
As soon as DOJ virus gets inside the system, it blocks an infected computer’s screen completely. The only thing a person sees is a message:
YOUR COMPUTER HAS BEEN BLOCKED
The work of your computer has been suspended on the grounds of the violation of the law of the United States of America.
Article 274 – Copyright
A fine or imprisonment for the term of up to 4 years. (The use or sharing of copyrighted files-movies, software)
Amount of the fine is $300. Payment must be made within 24 hours after the discovery of the violation. If the fine has not been paid, you will become the subject of criminal prosecution.
To strengthen the effect of the message cyber criminals use The United States Department of Justice name and logo and even a countdown timer, a bogus case number and FBI agent name. If you have never seen a ransomware before, you may easily get convinced that the message is true and pay the money. You may do it out of fear, especially if your computer has a webcam installed because this virus is programmed to turn it on and show your picture. It also has a note that any video and photo material will be used for your as a criminal’s identification.
Alas paying the fine will not fix an infected computer. The only reliable way to remove the Department of Justice (DOJ) virus is by using legitimate tools and instructions available in reputable sources. For the future note, if you are asked to pay money using prepaid payment system and this is supposed to be for a governmental/official institution, it is a clear sign of scam.