ransomware

Tue
26
Jan
John Lister's picture

Ransomware Gets Doubly Dangerous

Ransomware infections used to be about forcing victims to pay to regain access to their files. Now it appears more and more scammers are treating it as an exercise in blackmail. A new cybersecurity report says 18 known ransomware gangs have switched ... their focus to threatening to publish stolen data unless the victim pays up. That's led to some businesses paying the ransom even though they had access to backups in order to restore their files. Traditionally ransomware has been about file encryptions. Scammers get access to a victim's computer or network through malware, then the infection " ... (view more)

Mon
07
Dec
Dennis Faas's picture

Acronis True Image 2021 Review

If you lost all of the data on your PC, would you be devastated? According to a recent report, cyber crimes are booming thanks to the covid-19 pandemic . That's because cyber criminals are counting on the fact that most users are working remotely at ... home and/or retired, increasing their chances in converting a "sale". The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) said that in 2019, cyber criminals raked in $3.5 billion targeting individuals and businesses in the USA. Of that, $8.9 million was attributed to ransomware attacks, while scammers posing as fake technical support stole $54 ... (view more)

Thu
12
Nov
John Lister's picture

Beware of Bogus Microsoft Teams 'Update'

If you use Microsoft Teams, watch out for bogus advertisements offering an "update". It's a scam designed to install malware that tries to steal personal data. The group chat and video conferencing tool has understandably become more popular this ... year with the increase in remote desktop connections to workplaces. That's attracted the attention of scammers who have put together a creative strategy to steal data. It's important to note that the attack doesn't aim to exploit any vulnerability in Teams itself. Instead, it's simply aimed at people using it, particularly those who have only started ... (view more)

Thu
01
Oct
John Lister's picture

COVID-19 Changes Ransomware Tactics

COVID-19 hasn't had much direct effect on the world of malware, but it may be why ransomware scams are getting scarily efficient. So says Microsoft in its latest "Digital Defense Report." The report is based on Microsoft's experiences through its ... built-in and standalone security measures on consumer and business devices and networks. It covers the year from July 2019 though June 2020. (Source: microsoft.com ) Microsoft suggests COVID-19 itself hasn't made much difference to most forms of malware. That's something of a surprise given more people are working from home and thus sending ... (view more)

Wed
23
Sep
John Lister's picture

Hospital Hacker Must Pay $1.5M, Jailed 5 Years

A man who was part of a hacking gang that stole medical records and tried to blackmail an accounting company has been sentenced to five years in prison. Nathan Wyatt was a member of a group calling themselves The Dark Overlord. British-born Wyatt ... had previously been extradited to the United States. He was charged with conspiracy against the US, threatening damage to a protected computer, and aggravated identify theft. Originally Wyatt pleaded not guilty. He later changed his plea to guilty on the conspiracy charge and received a five year prison sentence and ordered to pay $1,467,048 in ... (view more)

Tue
16
Jun
John Lister's picture

New Ransomware: Pay Up Or Files Go Public

A new form of ransomware named after a Marvel super villain has some particularly evil features. The Thanos malware uses an approach more reminiscent of "physical world" blackmail. Despite the name, the malware thankfully doesn't imitate the ... character Thanos by - spoiler alert - deleting half the files in the entire universe. That said, it's still quite scary thanks to a couple of features beyond the usual tactic of encrypting files and demanding a ransom. Instead, the ransomware also seeks to spread across an entire local network and encrypt all the computers it can reach. This is especially ... (view more)

Thu
11
Jun
John Lister's picture

Free Anti-Ransomware Tool is Actually a Scam

A security company has warned that a free tool claiming to remove ransomware is in fact ransomware itself. Sophos has also reported that businesses that pay ransoms end up with double the financial costs of those who don't. The company's Paul ... Ducklin examined a tool called "Decrypter DJVU". It's promoted as a way to undo the damage of a strain of ransomware that encrypts files, adds the extension ".djvu" to the name, and demands a payment to decrypt and restore access. (Source: sophos.com ) The tool asks users to type in a personal ID and a file extension, though it appears it doesn't take ... (view more)

Wed
25
Mar
John Lister's picture

Critical Security Flaw Hits Windows 7 and 8 Hardest

Microsoft has warned users of a significant unpatched security flaw in Windows. It's offered some key steps to take while the problem is being fixed. The problem affects all currently supported versions of Windows, though Windows 7 and 8 machines ... are affected 'critically' according to the Microsoft advisory bulletin. Attacks on Windows 10 machines are considerably more constrained due to its enhanced security features. Microsoft says its currently only aware of targeted attacks on Windows 7 machines, though that could change now the bug has been made public. (Source: microsoft.com ) Adobe ... (view more)

Thu
12
Mar
John Lister's picture

New Ransomware Exploits Excel Format

A new ransomware variant takes advantage of a Microsoft Excel feature. It's a good reminder to keep security software up-to-date. The variant has been reported by security company Lastline. It involves a known ransomware called Paradise that ... operates in the familiar fashion: the attackers find a way to get remote access to a computer then encrypt files and demand a fee to restore access - sometimes in the tens of thousands of dollars, or much higher. In this case, the attackers try to trick victims into opening a file attachment that creates the opening for accessing the machine. The ... (view more)

Mon
24
Feb
John Lister's picture

Gas Pipeline Shut Down After Ransomware Attack

Ransomware forced an unplanned shutdown of a US gas pipeline for two days. It's not yet clear if the attackers intended to have that effect. The full details, including the identity of the pipeline and its operators, have been kept under wraps. The ... only official information that's been made public comes from a security alert bulletin by the Department of Homeland Security (DoHS). (Source: us-cert.gov ) The attack started as an all-too-familiar "spear phishing" attack. That's a deliberately targeted email that tries to fool somebody (that typically works for a corporation) into clicking on a ... (view more)

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