Windows 10 is a free upgrade for people who have a licensed copy of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 installed on their PC. However, those owners should also be aware of a new email scam that claims to offer the same upgrade, but in fact is a way for hackers to get people to install a ransomware program.
Cisco has discovered that the email is making its way across the Internet via an IP address located in Thailand. The email claims to have an installer attachment that will give PC owners the Windows 10 upgrade. However, the email's text has a number of odd characters, which is a big hint that it is not from Microsoft.
If a person does in fact click on the attachment and install the program on their PC, they won't get the Windows 10 upgrade but rather the CTB-Locker ransomware variant. The program then shows a message saying that the owner's PC files have all been encrypted and will stay that way unless the user pays their ransom.
Microsoft is definitely not sending out emails with program attachments to get people to upgrade to Windows 10. It has its own "Get Windows 10" app that the company is automatically installing on Windows 7 or 8.1 PCs that performs the upgrade or you can perform a clean install via ISO files. If you see any emails claiming to be from Microsoft with any kind of program attachment, its is an email scam and should be quickly deleted.
- Here's how to prepare your PC for the real Windows 10 upgrade
- Here's how to do a clean install on your PC for Windows 10