Ransomware and You


May 2017 was the tip of the iceberg when it came to malware attacks, but not just malware- ransomware. Governments, hospitals, and companies all over the world became victims of ransomware attacks, like WannaCry, NotPetya and EternalBlue in 2017.

What is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a form of malware (malicious software) that blocks the user’s access or encrypts (symbols instead of words) the files on a computer or network until the victim pays a sum to the attacker. Ransomware can infect a computer or network through emails, downloaded attachments, and links.

According to Malwarebytes annual report, Malwarebytes Cybercrime Tactics and Techniques: 2017 State of Malware Report, ransomware attacks increased by 90% in comparison to 2016.

How Can I Avoid Becoming Victim to Ransomware?

  • Keep your software up-to-date
  • Invest in computer and network security, such as firewalls and spam protection
  • Don’t open attachments or follow links in emails from unknown sources or senders that you don’t know     
  • Use email encryption and decryption available through email clients like Outlook Web Access (OWA)
  •   Back up files (use an external device and the cloud)

What Should I do if I Become a Victim of Ransomware?

  • Disconnect from the network
  • Remove the ransomware
  • NEVER pay the ransom. Some ransomware can’t be decrypted, such as NotPetya; meaning if you pay- you’re just giving someone money
  • Accept that your files are lost forever (unless you backed them up
  • If you’ve been able to remove the ransomware, you can restore backed up files

The best cybersecurity practice is prevention. In addition to keeping your software and apps up-to-date, we recommend using solutions like our mobile web browser applications, Sub Rosa and Sub Rosa Pro (available for Apple and Android).

Sub Rosa allows you to log in to the browser and access sites using your smartcard or derived credentials. You can also access Outlook Web Access (OWA) and sign/encrypt/decrypt email. Meaning you will know if an email attachment or link could lead to malware and possibly ransomware.

To learn more about our simple mobile security solutions to help protect yourself from ransomware, email sales@thursby.com or call (817) 478-5070.