By the time you’re reading this you’ve either been effected, or have heard of someone who’s been effected by the newest form of ransomeware. Dubbed, “WannaCry”, the all new ransomeware is the same old deadly virus with a new splash of paint, new pictures and most importantly, it’s taking advantage of a new MS17-010 flaw.
What Does It Do?
For those who don’t know, ransomeware is a type of virus that encrypts files on your computer (making them unreadable/usable). Usually your files are held hostage until you pay around $300-$500 in bitcoins or sometimes even gift cards. Often spread by malicious e-mails or download links, ransomeware can sometimes go unnoticed by most free antivirus programs. Here’s where WannaCry takes it to the next level…
The Next Level
What makes this flavor of ransomeware so nasty is its ability to spread from computer to computer without the need for user interaction. WannaCry (also known as ‘Wanna Encryptor’), leverages a Windows exploit that allows a remote hacker to hijack other computers on the same network that are also running un-patched versions of Microsoft Windows Operating Systems.
The Wake In Its Path..
So far, hundreds of corporations and several hospitals around the globe have been targeted, crippling these organizations ability to access its files, appointments, and patient/client’s information.
Large corporations aren’t the only ones effected. Small businesses and even some homeowners will experience this if their version of Windows or ‘antivirus definitions’ aren’t up-to-date. Give us a call to make sure you’re protected.
The Truest of Viral Spreading
- After Day 1 hit and almost 100,000 computers were targeted and a team of security researchers took notice.
- Day 2: dubbed ‘patchDay’, the team of researchers successfully slowed its spread. Meanwhile, Microsoft came out for emergency patches for all of its un-patched systems around the world.
- Just as the flu is never the same year-to-year, by Day 3, a new set of variants were released. WannaCry 2.0 was set into the wild and the deadly ransomeware will continue to adapt for a few weeks.
What To Do?
If you DON’T already have the virus, follow the normal rules of safe browsing… Beware of connecting to open-wifi and downloading e-mail attachments from unknown senders. And whatever you do – don’t download un-certified programs that ‘clean up your computer’.
If you DO have the virus, for the extremely tech savvy, there is a new tool you can use to try decrypting yourself (and even then, its a gamble). Or you can bring it in to Transform Technology Services and get a free diagnosis to see if the files are recoverable, remove the virus and continue browsing the interwebs.