OK, but that inspires me to repeat, once again (deja vu anyone?), that there is no way for any computer maker or OS maker to protect you against a scam that can only succeed by asking you to perform several risky actions and then asking you for your credit card number. Any file, of any type, that you download from any source, can contain malware code that can direct you to a web site asking for your credit card number. There is no malware-detection software that can protect you against trojan horse malware except after
it's been recognized and added to a database.
This particular scam is nearly identical to one that's rampant on Windows computers. It's not very sophisticated.
It requires you to do four things without paying any attention:
1. Click to download software (Except where Google's image search is still compromised, in which case a download can start automatically. That's Google's problem, and only they can solve it.)
2. Open a downloaded file (Except if you have Safari's prefs set to open safe files after downloading. Apple could address this by removing this option, though that would probably enrage a lot of users who think they don't need babysitting.)
3. Not notice the very strange behavior of your Mac while the bogus warning boxes are popping up (Any time anything
strange happens on your Mac, stop and think.)
4. Fill in your credit information in a form after all this
Just don't do any of those four things and the scam can't work. Better yet, follow the advice SMUG members have given above.
Oh, and by the way, you just have to love
this sentence, which implies that we'd be safer if only OS X were less safe:
The trouble may, ironically, be based in part on Mac OS' relative safety, as some victims assumed that software being pushed to them was coming from Apple.
Be sure to uncheck
this option in Safari Preferences:
"Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."