Costly computer virus serves as warning

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NEW YORK — A computer virus that spread to more than a million computers worldwide, and produced at least $50 million in illegal profits or losses to victims should be a “wake-up call” for banks and consumers unaware of the threat posed by Internet criminals, a prosecutor said Wednesday.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and George Venizelos, head of the New York FBI office, warned of the growing threat to financial and international security as they announced that a two-and-a-half-year year probe had resulted in three arrests and the seizure of vast amounts of computer-related evidence. Gozi virus had infected 40,000 computers in the United States since 2005.