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Security Alert - Ransomware

By Highland Chamber of Commerce

Security Alert

How much is your business data worth? If you have not backed up your computer lately, you could be in for a really bad day.

Once again, the ransomware virus – CryptoWALL – is beginning to infect computers across the country. The new-and-improved version 4 is even more destructive than its predecessors.
 
Ransomware is a type of virus that digitally encrypts your files so that they are unreadable. The international criminals behind this scheme will offer to send you a “decryption key” as long as you pay them a fee – in other words, they hold your files for ransom. And the longer you delay in paying the fee, the more expensive the ransom becomes – often into the thousands of dollars.
 
How you get it:
In most cases, the virus package arrives via email – either as an attachment or as a hyperlink in the email. These emails appear to be absolutely legitimate, often from an organization or person that you normally do business with.
 
How to not get it:
NEVER open any suspicious emails (especially unexpected), call the individual or organization to confirm that they sent it. NEVER click on a hyperlink and NEVER open an attachment in any email that you think is suspect.
 
What to do if you’re infected:
You have only one of two choices, neither of them good. You can either wipe the affected computer(s) and restore your files from backup, or pay the ransom. That’s it.

To date, there is NO antivirus or antimalware package that can protect you from this. And any vendors who say they can protect you are lying through their teeth.
 
Make sure you have current backups of all your company’s important data – we cannot emphasize this enough – think of it as business insurance.

 

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