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What is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a form of malware that takes over your computer and holds your data hostage until you pay a ransom.  In 2017, Ransomware accounted for over 5 Billion in global cost to business and looks to increase in 2018.  Once an attacker has installed Ransomware onto your computer, they will inform the victim of the amount of the ransom and where and how to send the payment.  Most will require payment in the form of Bitcoin which is highly untraceable. 

Once the ransom is paid, some attackers will send you a decryption code to enter into the system to acquire your data.  There is no proof that the attacker will not strike again.  Some, will just take your money or ask you for more money once the original payment is completed.

Delivery of the malware attack usually comes in the form of a phishing scam.   Emails that appear to be legitimate, but has a link to a malicious site that downloads the malware onto your computer.  Once installed, the machine usually locks up and displays a screen informing you of a Ransomware attack.

In order to help prevent a ransomware attack, follow these steps listed below.

·         Make regular backups of your data and keep them off of the network.

·         Make sure you have updated the Admin Passwords on your computers.

·         Install antivirus and anti-malware software on each computer.

·         Purchase a Cyber Policy that covers Ransomware.

·         Train employees on how to detect Phishing emails.

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