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What is Ransomware & Recent Attacks

What is Ransomware. Ransomware is a form of malware that encrypts a victim’s files. The attacker then demands a ransom from the victim to restore access to the data upon payment. Users are usually showed instructions for how to pay a fee to get the decryption key.

In 2017, ransomware resulted in $5 billion in losses, both in terms of ransom paid and spending and lost time in recovering from attacks.

Recent Ransomware Attacks:

  • A ransomware attack on Texas courts system and Texas Department of Transportation happened on May 14, 2020.
  • Ransomware group Maze claimed on May 19 to have hacked United States egg producer Sparboe, leaking preliminary information on a website to prove that they committed the attack.
  • A ransomware gang called REvil recently threatened to release almost 1TB of private legal secrets from the world’s biggest music and movie stars, such as Lady Gaga, Elton John, Robert DeNiro, Madonna, among others and this attack is ongoing.

Payment of ransom does not mean you (or your company) will get access to the data. Tools made for decryption of data, do not work 100% of the time. Also using digital currency for payment of ransom means that tracing the funds will be difficult, and usually impossible.

With the recent uptick in ransomware attacks in the past month, here are some ways to help prevent ransomware from affecting you.