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Intellicom shares information on RansomWare in Open for Business Magazine

publish date: March 31, 2016

RansomWare: What is it?

Ransomware is a nasty and dangerous type of malware and not a virus. It can infect a computer via a number of different methods, including by a user opening a seemingly harmless looking e-mail that contains malicious email attachments, viewing an email message with infected HTML content in the body of the message, visiting a website that has been hijacked or infected, or by clicking on malvertising (malicious advertising) which is an infected ad on a legitimate search results page.

Once the malware gets on a computer, it encrypts certain types of data files on the local hard disk drive and files on any mapped network drives on file servers making it impossible for you to access your files. When it has finished encrypting your files, a pop-up message is then displayed informing you that you have a set amount of time to pay for a key, which will decrypt (or unlock) the data files. If you don’t pay before the deadline, your files are lost and need to be restored from a good backup, if one exists.

New variants of ransomware continue to surface on a daily basis. The “bad guys” continue to work hard to find new ways to get past multiple layers of hardware and software protection. The latest variants of the crypto malware and ransomware are getting past firewall security appliances of all brands, antivirus software of all brands, email scanning and filtering technology of all providers, and DNS filtering technology. And the ransomware morphs on a constant basis, changing its footprint from infection to infection. So even when a security company identifies a new variant and entry point and updates their protection to block it, the ransomware has already morphed into a newer variant which is not detected. The process continues over and over again, every minute, every hour, every day, every week, and so on; making it very difficult to identify and prevent.

*** Intellicom has received permission to use this article from Open for Business Magazine ***

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