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Forum staff reports, Published November 07 2012

ND Attorney General warns of online scam invoking FBI

FARGO – The North Dakota Attorney General is alerting residents here about a computer scam in which a phony security alarm demands the computer user pay money or face jail time, according to a news release from the office of Wayne Stenehjem.

The fake warning will pop up on computers and say the FBI has taken control of the computer because it has been linked to illegal downloading, the release said. The user will then be prompted to pay money in order to “unlock” the computer.

The security program is actually a computer virus that must be removed by a professional, Stenehjem said. Authorities report that the virus is prolific and has been found on many popular sites offering free music, computer desktop wallpapers and video codes.

State officials advise residents to keep virus protection updated on their computers and to use a secure wireless Internet connection, the release stated.