How to protect yourself against ransomware

Datum: 30. March, 2017

Ransomware, one of the biggest IT security threats of 2016, will remain one of the most important dangers in 2017. With these programs the data on a computer can be encrypted and is therefore made inaccessible for its owner. Hackers usually attack individuals or organisations and ask for a ransom payment in return for decrypting or not leaking the hacked data.

That’s why ransomware is so dangerous, it hits you were it hurts and can cost you a lot of money. In the latest incident hackers claim to have access over 300 million iCloud accounts which will be deleted by April 9th if Apple is not willing to pay.

In order to help business to better understand ransomware the 2017 San Francisco RSA Conference offered its attendants one full day about the malicious attacks. The conference showed how to prepare for ransomware attacks, remove the nasty malware or even negotiate the ransom payment.

What can do against ransomware is to be careful and prevent the danger by following the basic rules below.

Basics to decrease the risk of exposure to malware:

  • Always update your operating system to the latest and therefore most secure version.
  • Implement a strong firewall and anti-malware solution.
  • However, do not rely only on anti-malware. Back your data up.
  • Make sure that Adobe Flash is not running when you surf the web.
  • Ensure you never click on a link you do not know or trust – on websites as well as in e-mails.
  • Don’t surf on websites you should not visit.

Defend yourself by backing up your data

The best thing you can do to keep your data safe is in any case to regularly back it up. With the back-up service of Skydoo for example you can restore your data online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

What to do if it really happens

In case you really got attacked and you did not back your data up you might end up paying the ransom because if you can’t remove the ransomware it is the only way to get your encrypted data back.

However experts recommend to contact the hackers in case it is possible and negotiate a price because ransomware is a business after all. However you should not pay without asking a “proof of life” to see if it is even possible to get your data back.

 

Sources: PC World | RSA Conference | The Hacker News