Rogue software or rogue is phony software that uses malware to advertise or install itself or to force computer users to pay for removal of nonexistent malware or technical issues. Rogue software often behaves like a conventional trojan, encouraging users to download a trial version that carries malware or ransomware, or it will execute other unwanted actions. There are also rogue antiviruses (different from real antiviruses) that claim to fix the user's computer but do nothing and instead add more malware, luring the user into a false sense of security or making the user pay for non-existent malware.
Another class of rogues come in the form of supposed software that claims to be either a crack or key generator for a sought-after game, a jailbreak tool or rooting tool, or an emulator for a yet-to-be-released program. Such rogue applications are usually spamvertised on YouTube and other video hosting sites.
The purported tool appears to work upon downloading, but would eventually display a fake error message asking for a BIOS image to be downloaded on their website, which actually leads to a survey asking users to complete an offer, or asks users to pay for a full version. The software itself is actually a phony GUI written in .net, containing no code that's related to its supposed purpose, and completing or participating in the offer leads to the risk of giving away confidential user information such as credit card details.
- Rogue security software on Wikipedia.