Are you up-to-date on the latest hacking scheme that could affect you? Ransomware is causing innocent and unaware people billions of dollars. Here is everything you need to know to protect yourself:

WHAT IS RANSOMWARE?

This is a form of digital kidnapping when someone hacks your computer and encrypts your files until you pay a lump sum of money. This simple yet harmful attack is growing in popularity – and it’s not hard to see why. The average cost to gain access to ransomeware encrypted files is between $500 and $2,000.

HOW COMMON IS RANSOMWARE?

Getting hacked might seem like an unlikely possibility, but recent attacks show that anyone can be susceptible. Bromium, a venture capital bank, reported that ransomware attacks nearly doubled in 2015. Ransomware attacks continued to grow in 2016: SonicWall reports that the attacks totaled 630 million attacks. In just the first quarter of 2016, around $209 million was paid to ransom hackers.

Experts predicted that ransomware attacks would double in 2017, which we witnessed during the massive ransomware attack that affected hundreds of thousands of organizations around the world in May.

While this attack utilized a known Windows XP vulnerability, the most common way ransomware hackers exploit its victims is through Adobe Flash. Of ransomware victims in recent years, 8 out of 10 were hacked through Adobe Flash Player. Another common way people get hacked is through downloading unknown files through email, social media, or Skype.

HOW DO YOU PREVENT IT?

You might be confused by all the logistics and the many ways you can be hacked but the easiest ways you can protect yourself is by backing up your data. SpiderOak ONE can help: by backing up your files in our end-to-end encrypted application, you have access to historical versions, deleted items, and point-in-time restoration features. This helps protect you from hackers as well as other issues such as hard drive failures, natural disasters, or even having your laptop stolen. All your files are protected through the SpiderOak ONE application.

PREVENT OTHER TYPES OF MALWARE

Besides backing up your data, make sure to keep your computer’s operating system up to date. The apps on your devices should be kept up to date as well. Be careful what you download and never click on suspicious files or links. For more information on best practices, please see our Infosec Guide.

Don’t let ransomware steal your files or your money. Protect your data with SpiderOak ONE.

Sources:

10 shocking new facts about ransomware

Ransomware statistics

2016 saw an insane rise in the number of ransomware attacks