Ransomware Attacks – Prevention-Repair

Ransomeware AttackHave you been hit by a ransomware attack yet? If not, you’re lucky.

Ransomware damage has jumped from $300 million in 2015 to an estimate $5 billion in 2017. This includes the amount of the ransoms paid, plus the costs of downtime and lost productivity.

Ransomware is a type of program that infects a computer and blocks a user from accessing their data until the user pays a ransom.

There are two versions of ransomware that can attack your computer.

Lock-screen ransomware displays a full screen window on the computer’s desktop that prevents access to the computer.

Encryption ransomware allows the user to have access to the computer, but encrypts files, making them unreadable. When the user tries to access the files, they look like gibberish. A pop-up window then informs them that they will be made available again only after a ransom is paid.

The hackers usually demand the funds be paid in bitcoin, because it’s a digital currency that is nearly impossible to track. To make matters worse, if you do decide to pay the hacker what they demand, you may find that the hacker is unwilling or unable to unlock your files. After all, these are criminals.

The most common way ransomware is spread is by emails with malicious attachments. Never open an email you don’t recognize, even if it’s from someone you know. Look at how the message is worded. Does it sound like them? Does their grammar or spelling look bad (many hackers are foreigners)? If you’re not sure, send them a massage and ask if they sent this to you.

Aside from making an effort to avoid opening sources that can expose your computer, the only solution is to have a back-up hard drive and back up your files to it daily. Better yet, have a cloud backup solution, like Carbonite, Mozy or iDrive. Ransomware might attack and attached hard drive, but it cannot attack a cloud backup.

What Can You Do if Infected?

Shut down your computer immediately to prevent the malicious code from running and causing more damage. Then take it to a computer repair shop. Our shop has about a 90 percent success rate at recovering the files, and it usually costs only $139 to have the work done.

About Steve Frantzis

Steve Frantzis is the Owner of Saguaro PC Tech, LLC, a computer repair shop in Tucson. If you have any questions or need help with your laptop, desktop, Mac, or mobile device, please call Us at (520) 250-5948.