What is Ransomware?
Ransomware attack is a kind of cyber-attack that involves hackers encrypting your personal data and blocking access to it until a ransom is paid.
To access your system, cyber criminals will need you to download a type of malicious software onto a device within the network. This is often done by getting a victim to click on a link or download a file by mistake, normally through an email or direct download from a website. As soon as the software is on a victim’s computer the hackers will start their attack by encrypting all files within the network. This normally happens one file at a time until all are compromised and is often undetectable during this process.
Once all files have been encrypting (locked) the cyber criminals will demand payment in return for decrypting (unlocked) the files. This is normally in the form of a Bitcoin payment, an online cryptocurrency.
How to protect yourself
Do not click on suspicious links or download unknown files!
Most Ransomware is downloaded by the victim by mistake and is often transferred through emails. The safest way to protect yourself is to avoid clicking links from unknown sources. Check the email of sender as well as the name, look at the address and telephone at the bottom of emails (if any) and read emails thoroughly. Misspellings and false information which you can double check via search engines can easily highlight that the email is false. However, the cyber criminals that operate Ransomware attacks are incredibly sophisticated and will try and make their email sound professional and above board so all users should be vigilant at all times. Emails asking you to pay invoices, claiming that your company is owed money back or a voicemail has been left are often used to lure victims to click a link or download an attached file initiating the virus. Users should also look out for malicious adverts on websites and questionable apps or programs that appear to be running. If in doubt the general rule is don’t click on a link, open or download attached files. Read more about phising emails
Back up your files
The greatest damage suffered from a Ransomware attack is the loss of data, including pictures and documents. The best protection against ransomware should the worse happen is to back up all of the information on your devices in a completely separate system. This can be done with an external piece of hardware or by investing in hosted back up in the cloud. This means that if you suffer an attack you won’t lose any information to the hackers and you won’t have to pay the ransom as you can restore clean files. Daffodil IT provide hosted back up solutions and can protect your data today.
Use an anti-virus program
Anti-virus programs can stop ransomware from being downloaded onto computers and can help find it if it already exists on your device. Most antivirus programs can scan files to see if they might contain ransomware before downloading them. They can also block secret installations from malicious adverts when you’re browsing the web, and look for malware that may already be on a computer or device.
Ensure your antivirus program is up to date as soon as possible. If you have anti-virus supplied by Daffodil IT you can check if there is a problem by viewing the icon on your taskbar. If everything is fine then you will see the normal icon and no action is required Please see the below examples depending on the product you subscribe to. If you see a little red ‘x’ on the icon then there may be an issue. If this is the case please contact Daffodil IT support on 0345 200 1185 for further advice as soon as possible.
If you do not currenlt have antivirus protection Daffodil IT can install is for you
Always install updates
Technology companies often release software updates to fix vulnerabilities that can be exploited by criminals to install ransomware. It is therefore always advisable to download the latest version of a software, browsers and apps as soon as they are available.
What to do if you think you’ve been affected by Ransomware
Don’t panic but please immediately turn off your computer! The virus will only continue to encrypt files if the device is powered on.
Call Daffodil IT
Whether we provide maintenance or not for your company, if you believe you have been infected with a Ransomware virus please call our technical team immediately on 0345 200 1185 and we will do everything in our power to resolve the issue. The faster you act the more files can be saved and less damage done.
Never pay the ransom!
Victims of ransomware attacks are advised to never pay the ransom fee as it encourages cyber criminals and may not result in files being recovered. If you have a back up, you can restore your device from that.