There is a new type of virus is going around that encrypts your files and holds them ransom until you pay the virus maker money. At that point, the virus maker will take your money and give you a code to decrypt your files back to normal. Current rate is $300. Paying the $300 may work sometimes and others it won’t leaving you with useless files.
It sounds like something out of a movie, but unfortunately it is true. I had the displeasure of seeing it this past week in action and it isn’t pretty. The virus named Cryptolocker has been coming through as an email attachment from places pretending to be the Better Business Bureau, Dun & Bradstreet and a few others.
This virus targets businesses, but home users are not safe either. I’ve read many stories of people losing all their pictures and documents. Cryptlocker wreaks havoc not only on the computer it infects, but other computers on the network including servers. Once it infects one computer, it then goes out looking for other computers on the network and encrypting files on those computers as well. This is a business owners nightmare.
The company I was helping was lucky enough to have backups so the encrypted data could be restored to its original state without paying the ransom. Making backups and checking to make sure those backups are working is very important.
You should also have two backup devices and rotate them every other week. One backup should be plugged into the computer and the other stored offsite at a secure location. Even with this scenario, the backup that is plugged in would also get encrypted by the virus so the offsite backup would need to be restored.
If you can’t keep a backup offsite, then you should highly consider one of the cloud backup offerings like Carbonite. Carbonite will allow you to save your files on a server far away in case there is a fire or some type of natural disaster that would damage your local backups.
This virus is only going to get worse and it’s a matter of time before the ransom starts to go up. If you would assistance implementing a local backup system and/or a cloud based backup, please contact GEEKYGUYS.