How to keep Ransomware off your PC

As computer viruses evolve, their methods become more sophisticated, even going so far as to hold your computer and your data hostage, hence it being called “ransomware”. Ransomware is a new type of virus that is quickly on the rise. There are three types of ransomware, here they are in order of severity:

  • Scareware – Fake antivirus tools that pretend to detect viruses and demand payment to fix them.
  • Browser or screen locking ransomware – Law enforcement scams use fake FBI or Department of Justice messages to claim they’ve detected illegal activity on your computer for which you need to pay a fine.
  • Encrypting ransomware – Pop up messages say your files are encrypted and demand ransom money be paid by a deadline in order to return them.

Depending on the flavor of ransomware you end up getting, these can be extremely costly. Not just if you decide to pay the ransom or not. If mission critical data ends up being tied up, then it can cost business downtime as well as any costs associated with having to recreate business critical data.

Speaking of the ransom, cyber security experts recommend not paying the ransom. Mostly because there is no guarantee that you’ll get your data back. Also it can make you a target for more attacks.

So then how do you protect yourself?

  • Use supported software that is receiving updates and bug fixes.
  • Automatically install Windows updates.
  • Have a strong backup plan.
  • Have a good cyber security strategy.(Antivirus and firewalls)

About the Author Tim Dixon

Tim Dixon is the owner of Solve IT Security.

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