- Mar 24, 2018
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Why you should keep your Computer Systems free from Ransomware Malware
Ransomware Malware is capable of shutting down a business and many other things. It can cause loss of vital information. This happens to vulnerable system with outdated anti-virus and operating systems. This virus which was recently released on the web is geared towards hijacking the system of unsuspecting victims and have them buy their access back with ridiculous amounts of money. High profile organizations and rich individuals who have confidential data and money are mostly the targets.
According to Trend Micro, Ransomware is a type of malware that prevents or limits users from accessing their system, either by locking the system's screen or by locking the users' files unless a ransom is paid. More modern ransomware families, collectively categorized as crypto-ransomware, encrypt certain file types on infected systems and forces users to pay the ransom through certain online payment methods to get a decrypt key.
Ransom prices vary depending on the ransomware variant and the price or exchange rates of digital currencies. Thanks to the perceived anonymity offered by cryptocurrencies, ransomware operators commonly specify ransom payments in bitcoins. Recent ransomware variants have also listed alternative payment options such as iTunes and Amazon gift cards. It should be noted, however, that paying the ransom does not guarantee that users will get the decryption key or unlock tool required to regain access to the infected system or hostaged files.
Users may encounter this threat through a variety of means. Ransomware can be downloaded onto systems when unwitting users visit malicious or compromised websites. It can also arrive as a payload either dropped or downloaded by other malware. Some ransomware are known to be delivered as attachments from spammed email, downloaded from malicious pages through malvertisements, or dropped by exploit kits onto vulnerable systems.
Once executed in the system, ransomware can either lock the computer screen, or, in the case of crypto-ransomware, encrypt predetermined files. In the first scenario, a full-screen image or notification is displayed on the infected system's screen, which prevents victims from using their system. This also shows the instructions on how users can pay for the ransom. The second type of ransomware prevents access to files to potentially critical or valuable files like documents and spreadsheets.
Ransomware is considered "scare-ware" as it forces users to pay a fee (or ransom) by scaring or intimidating them. Ransomware captures infected systems or encrypt files.
According to CNN report on 23rd of March 2017, Atlanta's mayor on Thursday urged anyone with personal information in city information systems to check their financial records as an investigation continues into a ransomware attack on the city.