I received the information below from the Neighbourhood Policing Team:
“We have been made aware by the National Cyber Crime Unit of an ongoing mass email spamming event (see below). We have been asked to circulate this message to raise the awareness of this kind of scam. Further information is available from the National Crime Agency (NCA) website on the link provided below.
“The National Cyber Crime Unit in the NCA is currently aware of an ongoing mass email spamming event. Individuals, and particularly small and medium sized companies are receiving emails that appear to be from banks and other financial institutions – these carry an attachment appearing to be correspondence linked to the message.
However, the file is malware that can install a piece of “ransomeware” known as Cryptolocker, which works by encrypting the user’s files on the infected machine and the local network it is attached to. Once encrypted, the computer will display a splash screen with a count down timer and a demand for the payment of 2 Bitcoins in ransom (Approx £536 as at 15/11/2013) for the decryption key.
In response, the NCA offers a range of advice which includes the need for the public to be aware of the threat and not to click on any such attachment. Further information is available on the NCA website“