New computer virus “Ransomware” holds data hostage

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(KPLR)  - Cyber criminals were behind the recent data breaches on retailers Target and Neiman Marcus. But now tech experts say there's a new virus and targeting personal computers.

Before you open your next email, Rich Demuro explains the clues to spotting corrupt correspondence that could cost you thousands of dollars.

It`s called 'Ransomware' and it works like it sounds, your valuable files are held hostage by hackers until you pay a ransom fee. But beware: if you get a digital demand for money, it might already be too late.
Scott Spiro, Computer Solutions Group: It takes all of your precious information and all of your personal data and holds it for ransom
Scott Spiro, Computer Solutions Group: It tells you how much longer you have to pay them the money they`re requesting before the encryption code key they have is wiped away forever...meaning that you will never get your data back.
Scott Spiro, Computer Solutions Group: It looks just like a regular e-mail that you might get from Fed-Ex, or UPS, or your bank, and it`s non-descript, there`s no real persons named there, and it will give you a form that you need to fill out, or say that it needs some type of information from you.
To protect your system, and your bank account, make the extra effort with emails you might be suspicious of.  First, check the sender, if there`s no name, there could be an issue.
Scott Spiro, Computer Solutions Group: Check the grammar, that’s a dead giveaway, is grammatical errors
Scott Spiro, Computer Solutions Group: If there is a link that it asks you to click, right click on the link, select 'copy,' go to your web browser, and paste that link into the browser.  That will tell you where it`s really coming from
And to stop internet impostors in their tracks, call in backup.
Scott Spiro, Computer Solutions Group: Run a virus protection software by a reputable source.  That can hopefully catch the system before it becomes a bigger problem

Another tip for pc users don`t underestimate the importance of regular software updates. For more help on protecting your computers and data, head to our website With your virtual reality check, I’m Rich Demuro.

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