Federal Trade Commission Pending Consumer Complaint Virus Email Message
April 10, 2014
The email message below: "Pending consumer complaint," has a virus or Trojan horse attached to it that will infect your Windows computer if you open it. The message is a fake and was not by sent by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). It was instead designed and sent by cybercriminals to trick the recipients into opening the malicious attachment, by falsely claiming that someone has filed a complaint about their businesses to the FTC and they should open the attached letter (pdf_ftc_complaint.zip) to view the compliant.
Please continue reading below.
The Federal Trade Commission Pending Consumer Complaint Virus Email Message
Subject: Pending consumer complaint
Federal Trade Commission
Protecting America's Consumers
FTC COMPLAINT ASSISTANT
NOTIFICATION OF A CONSUMER COMPLAINT
You are receiving this document because a third party has filled a complaint about your business and believes you have contravened the Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA).
At this time, the Federal Trade Commission has initiated a formal investigation into this complaint.
It is FTC policy that consumers who have a complaint write a letter to the business to see if they can resolve the problem.
A letter from your customer, including the complaint, can be downloaded from:
Please take a moment to consider the details of the enclosed letter. You may also wish to review your obligations under the Consumer Credit Protection Act(CCPA).
Your efforts to resolve the matter described may avoid the need for the FTC to become involved.
Where a FTC investigation finds a violation of the CCPA has occurred, charges may be laid. Successful prosecution under the CCPA may result in fines of up to $50,000 for an individual or imprisonment for a term not more than two years, and, if convicted a corporation may be liable to a fine not more than $250,000.
You are welcome to contact us regarding this matter using the following form:
Under the CCPA, the FTC is required to post information about businesses who fail to respond to consumer complaints.
Federal Trade Commission
600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20580
The email attachment “pdf_ftc_complaint.zip” is not a document or letter, but a file that that contains the malicious file or virus “pdf_ftc_complaint_case849029.pif”. So, please do not attempt open it. A PIF file is a Microsoft Windows executable file.
Do not open files ending with “.zip” or “.rar”, unless you are expecting these files from someone. Cybercriminals are compressing or adding their viruses to archive files such as Zip (“.zip”) or WinRAR( “.rar”) to make them undetectable or able to bypass your email provider’s virus scanners.
If you open this malicious file, your computer will get infected with a Trojan horse, which the cybercriminals behind this message will be able to use to access and take control of your computer remotely from anywhere around the world. They may spy on you, use your computer to commit cybercrimes, or steal your personal and financial information.
Now, if you have already opened the malicious file, please do a full scan of your computer with the antivirus software installed on it.
If you don’t have antivirus software installed on your computer, please click here for a list of free antivirus software. For a list of other virus email messages, please click here.
Also, click here for a list of email attachments you should never open, regardless of where they came from.
This malicious email message is similar to the following:
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