Ransomware is a relatively new breed of malware that aims to hold your computer or data ransom in order to extort money from the user. This malware is extremely destructive and costly to any business or consumer whose computer becomes infected. The only way to recover is to restore your files from a backup or to pay the ransom which doesn’t always work.
Initially, this ransomware was infecting PCs through email attachments, but now the FBI warns, users can get their PC infected “simply by clicking on a compromised website, often lured there by a deceptive email or pop-up window.” To protect your computer, it is important to have up to date antivirus, antispam and security software. However, it is even more important to exercise good security practices when using your computer.
- Don’t open attachments in emails unless you were expecting them, even if they appear to come from people you trust.
- Don’t click on links in emails without hovering your mouse over the link to verify that it points to the reputable website you expect it to. For example, an email claiming to offer FedEx tracking information should have links pointing to FedEx.com, not fedex-tracking.co.
- Don’t fall for the fake alerts claiming you need to update your software. Always defer to your IT provider for software updates.
We at Solutions By Design cannot stress enough how important a reliable backup solution is – not just to protect against ransomware, but also to protect against hard drive failure, theft, or other disasters. If you are unsure of your current backup system or its capabilities please don’t hesitate to give us a call. We recommend using Carbonite, an online backup, because it’s easy to configure, easy to use, and very reliable.