SmitFraud

The term SmitFraud is used to describe a type of spyware that tricks users into purchasing fake antispyware and antivirus programs. SmitFraud is a Trojan that is most commonly distributed through fake codec downloads. When attempting to play a video, for example, a user may be warned that a codec, such as VideoKeyCodec or BrainCodec, is missing and then download it. The user is unaware that this is a hoax and the fake codec is carrying, and will install, a form of SmitFraud on the system.

Once installed the malware will start showing pop-ups indicating that the system is infected with viruses and spyware. These pop-ups will show an alarming number of infections and provide links to Web sites where users can purchase the antivirus program to remove these infections. The problem is that this malware is not showing real infections, and it is simply tricking victims into purchasing a fake antispyware or antivirus program. Users may not even have an infection on their system, other than the SmitFraud program itself that is warning you of serious, multiple infections.

Vangie Beal
Vangie Beal is a freelance business and technology writer covering Internet technologies and online business since the late '90s.

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