What is Ransom Ware?
Ransom Ware is a new technique cyber criminals have been using to make money by holding your data hostage. The most common way that these criminals infect your computer is by spoofing an e-mail from a know client of your business with an invoice as an attachment. The invoice contains and infected PDF or document that silently infects your computer with the virus. Once infected the virus encrypts every file on your computer, pictures, Quickbooks files, documents you name it. It does it on any shared drive, usb drive, and any computer with an open share. Once down pops up a window on your computer demanding thousands of dollars in bitcoins.
Ransom Ware has become an increasing menace in the Houston area. I was out to dinner recently with some security experts and they informed me that according to the FBI the Houston area has become the most targeted region in the country for Ransom ware.
So what can be done to protect yourself from Ransom ware?
1) A good cloud backup, once the files are encrypted there is no way to recover them without paying the ransom, unless you have a good backup
2) Good anti-virus software
3) No open shares on your network, everything should be password protected
4) A program to filter web traffic and e-mail to block infected files something like Malwarebytes or Barracuda