This article will explain what is Ransomware and What are the most effective backup strategies to protect your important data from Ransomware attack. Ransomware is form of malicious software that encrypts files on a computer and demands a ransom in exchange for the decryption key. The user cannot access the encrypted files until they pay the ransom. The malicious program will decrypt the files after the ransom is paid. If the ransom is not paid and the files stay encrypted, the computer will become unusable.
Ransomware is harmful because once installed, it encrypts files on the victim’s computer, making them unreadable without the ransomware program’s given key. It is a sophisticated form of malware that infects a computer via a malicious file that the user opens. The ransomware is then installed as a result of this malicious file. If the user’s computer is connected to the internet, the malicious file can download additional malware and viruses and corrupt other files on the computer.
To prevent your computer from Ransomware attack, you should first understand what Ransomware is, and the following information will be beneficial to you.
Let us read to the finish.
What is Ransomware?
The ransomware definition is, “The act of encrypting a user’s files and demanding a ransom to decrypt them is known as ransomware”. A ransomware attack can take various forms, but the most common is to encrypt files on the computer and then demand a ransom to decrypt them. Victims are frequently asked to pay the ransom with a voucher in the form of a text file containing the ransom. The ransom is typically in the form of a digital currency, such as Bitcoin, leaving the victim with no direct method to pay the ransom and no guarantee that the ransomware will ever be decrypted.
Ransomware can infect a computer via an email message containing an infected attachment or an attacker hacking into the victim’s computer or network. When ransomware is installed on a computer, it encrypts all files on the computer except system files. The encryption procedure may render a computer unusable until the ransomware is decrypted. The file system’s formatting will prevent files from being decrypted.
After the victim’s private key is returned to the attacker, the attacker may use ransomware to disable the victim’s computer. An attacker may threaten to delete the victim’s files or demand a ransom for a paid decryption key.
Ransomware can be installed on a computer via a file. The file may download various malware, viruses, or spyware that might harm the computer.
What are the different types of malware?
Malware is a form of malicious program that is designed to harm a computer system. The Trojan Horse is malware that masquerades as a helpful program but contains bogus files designed to collect personal information such as passwords and credit card data. Malware comes in various types, including viruses, worms, spyware, adware, ransomware, and botnets. Also check, CCleaner Offline Installer for Windows 10.
Types of Ransomware
Ransomware comes in a variety of types. Some ransomware is intended to encrypt and lock files on a computer, but others are designed to encrypt and lock the user’s private key, which is used to decrypt data. The most lethal type of ransomware is called “wiper ransomware,” It is designed to encrypt and wipe a computer’s hard drive, rendering it unusable.
WannaCry ransomware infected over 230,000 computers in over 150 countries, primarily infecting Microsoft Windows machines. The ransomware encrypts files and prevents them from running or showing. In addition, the ransomware displays a message requesting payment in bitcoins, an untraceable form of currency.
Locky is ransomware that encrypts the files of users. The ransomware creates new Locky files and displays a message on the computer’s screen that states “your files are encrypted” and a phone number to call to get the files back.
Spam email communications are used to spread the Locky ransomware. The spam email message could contain a link to a pornographic film or a recent news piece. The email message may suggest that the user has won a jackpot or required personal information.
When opening email attachments, exercise caution. Locky ransomware has infected a large number of spam letters.
If you do not know the sender, do not open email attachments or click links in emails. Try not to guess a password or a question (such as your mother’s maiden name). Do not type your passwords, credit card numbers, or other sensitive information into websites you are not sure are safe. Do not click on any malicious links contained in a scam email. Keep no personal or financial information on your computer.
Cryptolocker is a ransomware that encrypts files and demands payment to unlock them. To infect computers, ransomware use a peer-to-peer network. On the computer’s screen, the ransomware displays the message “your files are encrypted.” The Cryptolocker ransom message states that it prefers to be paid in bitcoins and recommends the user to “pay the ransom through an online payment facility.”
Petya is ransomware that encrypts files on computers. The ransomware displays a message requesting a ransom payment in BitCoins on the computer’s screen. The ransom demand is 0.5 BitCoin (BTC). Petya ransomware also displays a message on the computer’s desktop screen.
The Petya ransomware is installed over the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP). With a message, Petya ransomware locks the computer’s desktop screen.
Bad Rabbit is ransomware that encrypts user files and locks the computer’s desktop screen. On the computer’s screen, the ransomware displays the message “your files are encrypted.” According to the ransom message in Bad Rabbit, it prefers to be paid in Bitcoins.
Ransomware is generally distributed via phishing emails. Scammers may send emails that seem to be from a reputable organization requesting personal information. The emails frequently contain links to websites that seem exactly like the real thing. Malicious programs, such as ransomware, are frequently contained in emails containing malicious links or attachments.
CryptoWall is a program of ransomware. The ransomware program encrypts files on the computers that have been infected. The ransomware program displays a message demanding a ransom payment in BitCoins on the computer’s screen. The message encourages the user to call a phone number to access the encrypted files. When the ransom is paid, the thieves call the number. On the victim’s screen, a lock appears. After that, the user is instructed to pay the ransom.
Jigsaw is a ransomware attack that locks the computer’s desktop screen and displays a message. On the computer’s screen, the ransomware displays the message “your files are encrypted.” Jigsaw’s ransom message specifies that it prefers to be paid in Bitcoins.
History of Ransomware
Ransomware is malware which encrypts the victim’s files and then demands a ransom for their safe return. It first surfaced in Russia in 1998 and has since become synonymous with the Dark Web. There have been several prominent cases of ransomware, such as when hackers called ‘TheDarkOverlord’ took control of the computers at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in 2017 and demanded $3.4 million in Bitcoin for the safe return of the systems. Despite their fearsome reputation, ransomware attack are relatively common and, together with phishing, are one of the most common ways of malware propagation.
How does Ransomware Spread?
Ransomware is quickly becoming one of the world’s most sought-after cyber dangers. Its unique method of propagating in a computer via malware makes it so difficult to eradicate. A hacker, for example, will find a way into the computer without being detected and then upload a virus that encrypts all of the files on your computer and demands a ransom to unlock them. The most accessible approach to avoid being a victim of ransomware is to keep your computer up to date and to have antivirus software installed.
Ransomware spreads by phishing (email), software, unknown source links, videos, and unlawful sites containing movies, software, and music, among other things. We recommend using a trustworthy Anti-Virus program to prevent your computer from Ransomware attacks. Avast free essential protection, Malwarebytes, and Kaspersky are all recommended.
Who are the Ransomware victims?
Most ransomware victims are ordinary civilians, but ransomware has also affected some business owners. It is essential to be aware of ransomware indicators in this new type of cybercrime.
Ransomware is malware that encrypts data and prevents access to a computer system until a ransom is paid. The attackers will often hold the victim’s files hostage for an unspecified period.
Every day, more than 100,000 computers are infected with ransomware. Companies are making it more challenging to respond to cyber-attacks due to this type of cyber attack. When a company’s databases are infected with ransomware, the entire network is usually infected.
Ransomware infestations on a computer are challenging to detect. The attack is usually launched via email or a link. Typically, the email contains a malicious attachment. When a victim visits an infected website, links might be converted into ransomware. The attacker typically demands a ransom in exchange for an encryption key that will unlock the files. In other cases, the attacker may threaten to delete the data if the victim does not pay.
Make a backup of your important data. It’s possible that an encrypted hard drive can’t be recovered. It is advisable not to put money into the attack. Make use of strong passwords. It is usually a good idea to use a difficult-to-guess password. Using various passwords for different accounts can be a good idea. Do not open attachments or click on links in emails that appear suspicious. Download programs and updates only if they are essential. A program or service can become infected with ransomware. Always think before you click on a link or open an attachment. If you become infected with ransomware, do not pay the ransom. Paying the ransom may compromise the accounts that the ransomware has compromised in some cases. You can recover the files if you accidentally delete them. There is no guarantee that your data will be safe.
What is a Ransomware attack?
Ransomware attacks are among the most dangerous risks to your business. They can give hackers access to all of your sensitive information, and without the necessary security measures in place, they can enter your systems and do malicious acts. As a result, you must have a complete backup plan and test your backups frequently to make them work regularly. If your backups are compromised, you should take quick steps to safeguard your system.
Have you got any Encryption Software?
Encrypted data is one of the most important aspects of your backup strategy since it reduces the likelihood of a security breach. Ransomware attack, for example, typically include files in plain text format. On the other hand, the hackers will be unable to access your backups if they are encrypted. Even if they manage to obtain access to your system, the encryption will prevent them from accessing the rest of your files.
In addition to encryption, you should have antivirus software running. Many types of ransomware are designed to avoid detection by antivirus software. As a result, you must ensure that it is up to date and operational.
What are the most effective Backup Strategies?
Is there a backup plan in place for your business? If not, consult with an IT specialist about developing one. In addition to encrypting your files and utilizing antivirus software, there are some other precautions you can take to protect your systems from ransomware attacks. For example, you should regularly and on a schedule back up all of your data to another system. You’ll want a backup of your data to be able to restore it if a ransomware attack compromises your systems.
What should you do if your computer has been infected with Ransomware?
How long should you wait for ransomware to encrypt all of your files if you suspect your computer has been infected? It depends, is the answer. For example, if you have a backup of your files, you may want to wait until the encryption process is complete before restoring the backup. If you don’t have a backup, it may be better to eradicate the virus with computer recovery software.
How to Detect Ransomware on a Computer?
A user can run a malware scan on their computer to identify ransomware. This will usually detect whether or not their machine is infected and provide additional information about the possible infection.
VirusTotal is a free online virus scanner that analyses suspicious files and returns their hash values, which users can find by visiting this link: VirusTotal. Because hash values are unique for each executable and file, if a user suspects that their files are infected, they can upload them to VirusTotal and have them scanned by over 40 antivirus scanners.
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is a free anti-malware scanner that will run an on-demand scan and present the user with information about potential infections. The user can also manually download the complete version of their software and run it on a computer.
Trend Micro Housecall is a free scanner that allows you to check your computer’s running processes as well as for malware. The user must be an administrator on the computer to run it, as it will not operate if running as admin is not enabled.
Panda Security is a scanner that will run an on-demand scan on your computer and present information about any viruses to the user. The user can manually download the complete version of their software and run it on a computer.
Microsoft Safety Scanner is a free vulnerability scanner that scans your computer for flaws. This scanner will check viruses and other malicious software but not assist in malware eradication.
Example of a ransomware attack: An overview of one specific attack involving a ransom paid in Bitcoin.
Ransomware has been an increasingly common cybersecurity threat in recent years. Recently, a ransomware attack occurred in the United Kingdom, where an NHS hospital was compelled to pay a ransom of more than $17,000 to regain access to their systems. The hospital paid the ransom with Bitcoin; a digital currency gained over the blockchain. The ransom was paid with the cryptocurrency Cryptsy. The attack was rated as a “level 3” security breach. “The initial attack was spotted by NHS Digital and local police on March 31st,” Dr. Peter Walsh, NHS Digital’s chief clinical information officer, said in a statement. “Once they realized what had happened, our IT teams worked fast to reduce the damage and restore normal service.” A phishing email was used to disseminate the ransomware. “The ransomware utilized old files that had been destroyed,” Walsh explained. “This was a potential flaw in the NHS IT system, as erased files remained accessible for some time.” The threat, though, is not over.
In the aftermath of the attack, hospitals and clinics in the United Kingdom have been instructed to “take further precautions.” The NHS will spend more than $1 billion on security this year, with $300 million going into cybersecurity. “This incident demonstrates how critical it is for health and care providers, particularly the NHS, to develop and maintain good security,” NHS England said. “We anticipate that all health and care companies will have measures in place to prevent and protect against data breaches.”
How to Prevent and Protect Against Ransomware Attacks
It is essential to keep your data safe if you wish to protect against ransomware attacks. Using robust encryption is the best approach to protect your data.
1) Back up regularly: Back up all of the files you wish to save regularly so that you can restore them to a new device if something goes wrong.
2) Use strong encryption: Use the strongest encryption available and install it on all devices at home and the office.
3) Consistently update: All of your software, apps, and other tools on your devices should be updated regularly. Make sure you are aware of any patches or other updates released for any software or app you use regularly.
4) Install Antivirus or Antimalware: Install Antivirus or Antimalware software on your computers. Make sure it is up to date, then set it up to run automatically in the background, checking all produced or opened files.
5) Be aware of phishing emails: A phishing email is the starting point for many ransomware attack. In phishing emails, never click on links or open attachments.
Ransomware is malicious software that encrypts the victim’s data to prevent its access. This is frequently done when the victim’s computer contains sensitive or valuable data. The perpetrator of the attack demands payment before returning their data.
What Is Kaseya?
Kaseya’s international headquarters are located in Dublin, Ireland, and the company’s US headquarters are located in Miami, Florida. The vendor has a presence in ten countries.
Kaseya offers IT solutions such as VSA, a unified remote monitoring and management tool for network and endpoint administration. In addition, the company offers compliance systems, service desks, and a platform for professional services automation.
Kaseya claims that over 40,000 businesses worldwide utilize at least one Kaseya software solution, and the company’s product is created with enterprises and managed service providers (MSPs) in mind. Kaseya is an important part of the software supply chain because it provides technology to MSPs that serve other businesses.
Kaseya Ransomware Attack
Kaseya CEO Fred Voccola disclosed “a potential attack on the VSA that has been limited to a small number of on-premise clients” on July 2 at 2:00 PM EDT, as previously reported by ZDNet.
Simultaneously, out of prudence, Voccola advised clients to immediately shut down their VSA servers.
“It’s important that you do this right away because one of the first things the attacker does is disable administrative access to the VSA,” added the executive.
Customers were informed of the incident via email, phone, and online notifications.
While Kaseya’s Incident Response team investigated, the company opted to proactively shut down its SaaS servers and data centers.
By July 4, the business had updated its assessment of the incident’s gravity, referring to itself as the “victim of a sophisticated cyberattack.”
Cyber forensics experts from FireEye’s Mandiant team, as well as other security firms, have been called in to help.
“Our security, support, R&D, communications, and customer teams are working around the clock in all regions to rectify the issue and restore service to our customers,” Kaseya stated, adding that more time is required until its data centers are brought back up.
Kaseya will provide a timeline for deploying a security fix to on-premises clients once the SaaS servers are online.
Kaseya stated in a July 5 update that a remedy had been developed and would first be released to SaaS environments once testing and validation tests were completed.
“We are preparing a new patch for on-premises clients concurrently with the restoration of the SaaS Data Center,” the business claimed. “We are starting with SaaS since we have complete control over that environment. We will provide a schedule for releasing the patch to on-premises users once that process has begun.”