Ransomware is a type of malware that accesses a victim’s files, locks and encrypts them, and then demands the victim to pay a ransom to get them back. Cybercriminals use these attacks to get users to click on attachments or legitimate links that contain malicious code.

How It Happens

Tips to avoid Ransomware

Keep the software on all Internet-connected devices up to date. All critical software, including computer and mobile operating systems, security software, and other frequently used programs and apps, should be running the most current versions. Turn on automatic updates in the security settings.

Protect your systems with security software. Install and keep security software (antivirus, antimalware & firewalls) on all internet-connected devices.

Turn on two-step authentication – also known as two-step verification or multi-factor authentication – on accounts where available. Two-factor authentication can use anything from a text message to your phone to a token to a biometric like your fingerprint to provide enhanced account security.

Protect your valuable work, music, photos, and other digital information by making an electronic copy and

storing it safely. If you have a copy of your data and your device falls victim to Ransomware, you will be

able to restore the data from a backup.

Keep at least three (3) copies of your data,

and store two (2) backup copies on different storage media,

with one (1) of them located offsite.

Get a passphrase, instead, which is a sentence of at least 15 characters long. The longer, the better.

Focus on positive sentences or phrases that you like to think about and are easy to remember.

Links in email, social media posts, texts, and online advertising are often how cybercriminals try to steal

your personal information. Even if you know the source, if something looks suspicious, delete it.

Don’t click on a link from a stranger. Employ an email scanning software that scans your

email for suspicious emails.

Restrict users’ permissions to install and run software applications

These users include children and other family members on home devices.