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Ransomware, what actually is it?

Every day, there is a different piece of malware that threatens to wipe or control the data from being accessed by damaging or destroying computers worldwide. One such malicious malware is infamously known as ‘Ransomware’.

This malware prevents the user from opening the system or the data by locking them out. It’s usually done by encrypting the system. The motivation of a hacker for corrupting a system with ransomware is almost always extortion.

The target is informed by the hacker in advance to pay the ransom if they wish to get their data back. The payment is usually made via bitcoin which allows the hacker to hide & mask their identity.


How Does Ransomware work?

Ransomware can be acquired by anyone with access to the darknet. The hacker can then rework the malware to their specific needs and distribute it. The circulation of the ransomware is done through spam emails, infected software, hazardous websites and corrupted external hard drives.

What are the different kinds of Ransomware?

The three main forms of ransomware are as following:

  1. Scareware

 Unlike its name, this malware is slightly threatening. This ransomware will keep transmitting messages – asking you to pay or else the malware will wipe your computer. However, your data is completely safe and in your control.

  1. Screen Lockers

This ransomware will totally block you out of your system. Once you start your computer, you will be greeted with a message stating that you’ve been locked out and you will have to pay a ransom of their choice.

  1. Encrypting Ransomware

 The worst kind of ransomware, it encrypts your files and keeps them locked unless the ransom is paid, regardless of how hard you try to escape. Once this attack happens, there is no other way to retrieve the data short of paying the hacker.


Precautionary Measures

One of the very foundational ways to keep yourself protected against ransomware attacks is by keeping a backup of all your devices on a consistent basis. Avoid clicking on any spam emails or downloading any unknown files onto your computer.

Frequently update all your system files and software to take care of any loopholes. But the best way to combat ransomware attacks is by being educated.


How do you remove Ransomware from a system?

Well, depending on the level of encryption, not much can be done to eliminate ransomware. But be sure not to pay the ransom upfront as it doesn’t ensure a stop on the ransomware attacks. It also doesn’t guarantee that they’ll release your data either.

However, there are things you can do once an attack has taken place:

  1. Use decrypting tools in attempt to retrieve some of your encrypted files
  2. Restart the system in a safe mode to start it from last restore point
  3. Try to restart the system from a CD or a bootable drive.
  4. Install anti-malware software, (You hopefully have this already).

There are countless methods and precautions to protect your data from malware. Keeping yourself educated about the developments in the security realm of the digital world is the best way forward. Knowledge is always key.


We’re Netplatforms.

If you’re bewildered by the prospect of reviewing your Data Backup, we can help.

We’re Net Platforms and we have years of experience in supporting small-medium businesses across London and Essex with such technology challenges. We’ll get to know your business and create the most appropriate solution to meet your technical requirements, while being commercially sensible in cost. Please contact the team today on 0207 993 9035 or