Are You Protected? How To Avoid Ransomware Attacks

Are You Protected? How To Avoid Ransomware Attacks

Are You Protected? How To Avoid Ransomware Attacks

The virus spread quickly because the culprits used a digital code believed to have been developed by the US National Security Agency - and subsequently leaked as part of a document dump, according to the Moscow-based computer security firm Kaspersky Lab. "The idea is to try to trick the victim into running a malicious piece of code".

Beware of unknown emails, especially if there are attachments or links. Tens of thousands of computers have already been infected.

"Ransomware, like the name suggests, is when your files are held for ransom", said Peter Reiher, an adjunct professor at UCLA who specializes in computer science and cybersecurity.

"Whether or not you think the USA government should be spending a fortune developing such cyberweapons, surely it is obvious that the weapons they develop should be properly secured". If you don't pay up within a week, you lose everything.

Computers booting up to start the workweek might continue the spread of "WannaCry", a ransomware attack where hackers lock down a computer and threaten to delete all its data unless a ransom is paid.

They exploited a ideal storm of factors - the Windows hole, the ability to get ransom paid in digital currency, poor security practices - but it's unclear if the payoff, at least so far, was worth the trouble. And, while the company did issue early fixes for its newer operating systems, patches for older Windows systems were only issued free of charge over the weekend, after the attacks began. There is no evidence of the hackers giving people files back.

The updated ransomware demands 0.11943 bitcoin (around $218) as the payment for unlocking one system.

Law enforcement officials have discouraged people from paying these ransoms. "We have been in touch with Microsoft and others.even they have not got any reports", PTI quoted Sanjay Bahl, Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), director general. But Villasenor said there is "no flawless solution" to the problem.

Microsoft therefore took the highly unusual step to release an update for Windows XP users and urge them to update their software (if possible) as soon as possible.

It says the latest virus exploits a flaw in Microsoft Windows identified by, and stolen from, United States intelligence.

If you do have an older version of Microsoft Windows, an update is available.

To ensure your backup is effective against ransomware, you should use 3-2-1 backup strategy.

"Systems which did not apply a patch update for this vulnerability were affected by the WannaCry ransomware which uses worm-like behaviour to affect vulnerable systems on the network", it explained.

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