March 31, 2021 Zachary Kitchen

How to Avoid Ransomware Attack

The Internet has significantly transformed people’s lives, but ransomware attacks have made it a dangerous place. Today, cybercriminals have devised new strategies to execute cybercrimes. Ransomware, which refers to malicious software that locks your computer and hinders you from accessing your data until you pay a ransom, has become a significant threat to information stored on personal or organizational computer systems. Over 200 000 individuals have become cyberattack victims in the last few years, and the numbers continue to rise.

However, the following tips will help you protect your mobile devices from malware infection:

1. Ensure your operating system and software is always updated

The best way to avoid malware infection is to keep your operating system updated. Running updates helps you ensure that you benefit from the latest security patches and inhibits cybercriminals from exploiting your software’s vulnerabilities.

2. Back up your data

Saving your essential data on a separate system reduces your chances of becoming a ransomware attack victim. Ensure you copy your crucial data on an external hard drive or cloud service and make sure you do not leave it connected to your computer when not in use. In case your hard drive is plugged in when your computer gets infected, the attackers will also encrypt the data.

3. Never download email attachments from unknown senders

Ransomware can get into your mobile device through email attachments. Never open email attachments from untrustworthy senders. Check who sent you the email and confirm whether the address exists. If you cannot tell whether the attachment is genuine or not, contact the sender and double-check. Besides, do not open attachments that ask you to open macros to view them. If the attachment contains malware, it will run the malicious macro once you open it, giving the attackers control over your device.

4. Only download from verified sites

To reduce the chances of infecting your computer with malware, never download media files or applications from unknown sites. Always visit verified websites when you need to download something. Many reputable websites have markers that you can easily recognize. If you want to download a file on your phone, ensure you download from trusted sources, such as Google Play Store for Android users and Apple Store for iPhone users.

5. Install security software

While cybercriminals are becoming more skilled in executing cyber-attacks, installing security software will help you protect your computer against malware infection. When you stream or download files, the software blocks infected files, preventing malware from infecting your computer.

As the number of more sophisticated devices increases, it becomes difficult to keep them all safe. However, the practices mentioned practices would help you avoid ransomware attack.

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