CryptoLocker Ransomware

There is a new computer worm that has recently surfaced; it is known as "CryptoLocker". This new ransomware encrypts files in the victim’s computer, and demands a certain ransom for decryption. This ransomware is spread using social engineering tricks via social media and email attachments. If you do not know who is sending you the email attachment or why, do not open it. Try to contact the sender and verify the attachment.

The CryptoLocker Ransomware Looks like this:

This dangerous new ransomware encrypts all the different files on your computer and any network drives then it requires a key to unlock them. This key is what they want you to pay for. The amount is equivalent to $300.00 USD. We do not recommend paying this as there is no guarantee that this will fix the issue or stop it from happening again. They give you 72 hours before they destroy the key and your files are locked forever. So far there is no way to unlock infected files. This is why it is important to have a good backup system in place. With a good back up you can just delete the infected files and restore them from your backups. Once you see the screen demanding payment for the unlock key it is too late and your files have been infected. This is one of the most dangerous and destructive viruses we have seen in years.

We recommended the following security measures:

  • Ensure that all important software on your machine, such as the Operating System, Adobe Reader, Microsoft Office, and internet browsers to name a few, are patched and up-to-date.
  • Keep your machine’s security software up-to-date.
  • Avoid clicking URLs and opening unsolicited email attachments, particularly from unknown sources.
  • Be careful while using removal medias such as pen drives, external hard disks, etc. that are connected to a machine not protected by updated security software.
  • Always keep a backup of all your important documents using a reliable backup software.

As technology continues to become more and more important in our lives, we will keep seeing viruses and malware getting worse and worse. This is a good example of why it is very important to pay attention to how you are using technology and to make sure you remember security is very important. Always use caution when dealing with an unknown email, attachment, fax or internet link.

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