|CryptoLocker - what you need to know|
One of the biggest threats to the security of any business network is malware. There are many different forms of malware out there that can infect systems in a nearly unlimited number of ways. In the past few weeks there have been numerous stories about CryptoLocker – a new form of ransomware that is proving to be a problem for many companies.
Knowledge is power so finding out more about CryptoLocker is recommended, as well as how you can take steps to protect your systems.
What is CryptoLocker?
This particularly nasty piece of malware infects user systems and locks files, threatening to delete them unless the hacker is paid. It is being spread four different ways:
CryptoLocker installs itself to the Documents and Settings folder on your system and then proceeds to search for specific file types like Microsoft Word Docs or Adobe PDFs. It applies an asymmetric encryption which requires both a public and private key to unlock. The public key is stored in the virus itself and is used to encrypt the files. The private key is hosted on the hacker’s server.
What happens if I get infected?
You will also see a timer counting down from 100 hours. If this reaches zero, your encrypted data will be deleted with a very slim chance of the files being recoverable. The preferred method of payment is in BitCoins – a digital currency. The pop-up window has instructions on how to submit the payment – usually through an online payment method like Green Dot – MoneyPak.
The good news is, once you submit the payment, you will receive a key you can enter to unlock your files. The hackers have said that they won’t re-infect systems, and network security companies have confirmed that so far, this has been the case.
While many up-to-date virus and security scanners will pick up CryptoLocker, most won’t be able to recover or decrypt files even if the malware itself is deleted. If you see the pop-up window, it’s probably too late.
How do I prevent CryptoLocker from infecting my systems?
Looking to learn more about CryptoLocker and how you can keep your systems safe from it? Contact us today.
Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.
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