Ransomware is a type of virus that encrypts data for a specific period of time and then deletes it. It’s a way for hackers to blackmail individuals and companies that have important data on their computers.
Data is one of the most significant assets of a business, and hackers try to exploit this fact to its extent. There were over 204 million ransomware attacks reported in 2018. This shows it’s not a minor threat anymore. If you are not prepared for it, you will become its victim. If a ransomware has attacked you or someone you know, here is what you need to do.
Isolate the Infection
Computer viruses spread very fast. As soon as you find out about the attack, disconnect all your systems from the infection. Make sure any shared storage or local network is not connected to the affected area. Unless a trusted antivirus that needs the internet is doing its job, turn off the internet connection. If you can see the virus spreading and there is nothing else you can do, shut down the computer; it’ll stop the damage where it is.
Understand the Type of Ransomware
There are dozens of types of ransomware. Although all do the same kind of damage, there are created differently. You can look for a cure only after finding the disease. Look for ransom notes on the computer and search the attack patterns on the internet. Once you get a name, you can search for its antivirus. Here are some of the most common ransomware.
- Bad Rabbit
You Have Only Three Options
You have three options to choose as your next step after the attack. Only you can make a decision here because it’s your loss at stake, and there is usually a short deadline before the virus deletes all your data.
Pay the Ransom
You will find notes in every infected folder. These notes will have a URL and a bitcoin account with instructions. Ransom attacks executed on mass usually ask for 1200 USD. The number would be different if you were explicitly targeted.
Try Using an Antivirus
There is an antivirus for every virus. But all ransomware keep updating, and there is usually no cure when they are released. You will get a decryption tool for the virus type and version if you can keep your encrypted data safe for a few months.
Clean and Restore
You can wipe the entire system clean. It will remove the data as well as the virus. If you had an online backup, there is nothing to worry about. If you didn’t have a backup, get a professional or a premium data recovery tool.
Acquire Professional Help
If you are business with much at stake, you can’t take any risk of losing the data. It is suggested to acquire professional ransomware removal service to sort the issue on your behalf. If there is a solution, they would know it. They can even negotiate on your behalf to reduce the amount of the ransom and protect your system from any future attacks.