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Published On: Tue, Jun 4th, 2019

What Do You Need to Know About Ransomware Viruses?

By David Balaban

The most important thing you need to know about computer viruses is that there are many of them and that they are all different. Hackers are working hard each and every day to improve their code, trying to make sure that the updated viruses successfully bypass new obstacles that antivirus vendors created just yesterday. Ransomware viruses are also made different, and therefore it is necessary to deal with them using different methods.

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

In general, cybersecurity experts strongly advise preventing the possibility of an attack in a timely manner than to look for ways of dealing with the bad consequences of virus attacks.

The essence of a ransomware attack is to encrypt files using strong encryption algorithms. To decrypt the cipher, you need a private key, which is usually stored on a remote server controlled by the criminal. The creator of the virus requires to transfer a certain amount of money to his account in order to provide victims with the decryption key. This scheme is simple, clear, and quite popular among cybercriminals.

The recent goal of ransomware creators is big organizations and companies. Data stored by big companies is highly valuable and big bosses are willing to pay any sums to have locked data returned.

Many of us work somewhere, representing a company. Many of us are accustomed to storing work files on our home computers, some even work at home. Some people collect valuable photos in a digital family album, and others just finished a diploma or coursework. Such data is also valuable, which means that private users may well fall victims to extortion viruses. Therefore, it is always better to think about protection methods already today.

How does the ransomware virus spread?

Of course, hackers spread their ransomware via the Internet. The spread of the ransomware viruses is carried out through emails that get sent to potential victims in big volumes. The letter may tell you that Dropbox downloads are contained in the attached document like “files-packed.exe”. Activation of the virus occurs immediately when you download and open this attachment.

Once on your PC, ransomware will automatically block a number of Windows functions. After that, it starts scanning and encrypting all files. After that, a message will be displayed demanding payment. In fact, there are many variants of how everything can happen, but, as a rule, they are all quite typical and similar to each other. The most important thing is the same outcome: you need to pay for the data. But do not be in a hurry to transfer money, try to remove the virus and decrypt your files.

How to remove the ransomware virus?

To remove the ransomware, try one of these methods:

  • Format your hard disk with the mandatory reinstallation of the operating system.
  • Go to one of the popular sites that help decrypt encrypted files. Nomoreransom.org and bleepingcomputer.com are the most valuable resources in this regard.

It also happens that a virus completely blocks the entire Windows, preventing you from accessing any website. In this case, I recommend using another device with an active Internet connection.

How to protect yourself from ransomware?

Today, the most popular and known extortion virus is called GandCrab. Since it is distributed via emails, you must be extremely careful when opening a message and never click on suspicious attachments. Always check the source from which you suddenly received a letter, even if this letter is not in the spam category.

In addition, be sure to get reliable antivirus protection. After installing a good antivirus, do not ignore its warnings that opening a file may be malicious and keep your antivirus always updated.

It is very important to make regular backups of all your files. You will not need to pay the hackers if you have all your recent data safely stored in another place. Keep your backups offline stored on a flash drives. Connect this drive only to transfer new files.

Conclusion

Today we told you all about the ransomware viruses. Now you know what this computer threat is, how to deal with it, and how to protect yourself from it. And may the virus never tear you apart!

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

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About the Author

- Outside contributors to the Dispatch are always welcome to offer their unique voices, contradictory opinions or presentation of information not included on the site.

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