We all hear the term “ransomware,” but do we know what it is?

Imagine this: You receive an email from your credit card company – you have gotten emails from them before.  You quickly flip through to make sure you haven’t missed an account update or an electronic statement.  Then you click “Trust content from this sender.”  No big deal right?

Actually, it is. The next morning when  you log onto your computer all you see is: “IMAGE CANNOT BE DISPLAYED – FILE CORRUPTED”

Here is what probably happened:

When you were reviewing that “credit card” email, you allowed a virus to run.  That virus, was “ransomware.”   It ran all night, encrypting your data then sent the key to a server somewhere overseas.  All that is left behind are files that state: “YOUR DATA HAS BEEN LOCKED. IF YOU WANT TO REGAIN ACCESS, YOU MUST SEND $LOTS OF MONEY$”

At the very first sign that your data is not available, IMMEDIATELY power off your computer and disconnect everything.  Then shut off all other computers in your home or office.  Ransomware relies on your computer to be on.  If you turn your computer(s) off immediately, you minimize the encryption.

If you follow those steps, there is a very good chance that your losses will be next to nothing.  However, your computer will have to be assessed and cleaned of any malicious software before you can turn it back on.

As always, if we can ever be of assistance, please feel free to give us a call at 603-524-1400, email us at support@samedaycomputers.com, or link up with one of our technicians on live chat at www.samedaycomputers.com!