If you’ve ever read a PC security blog, then you’ve probably read a tip like this: don’t download suspicious files from unknown sources.
Everyone knows that tip.
Sound scary? It is.
What is Ransomware?
Ransomware is a type of malware that infects your computer and then encrypts valuable data.
After encrypting this data, it locks you out and demands a password. In order to get that password, you need to pay a lofty sum – typically somewhere between $200 and $600 in Bitcoin.
If you don’t pay that sum within a certain period of time, then your data is erased.
Ransomware attacks have taken place against everyone from government organizations to major companies to individual users.
To date, all major ransomware attacks have involved inadvertently downloading a malicious file. Most attacks in 2015, for example, arrived in infected Word documents.
These Word documents would contain a macro, or a series of commands embedded in documents. Instead of performing a useful task, that macro would install ransomware on your computer.
Windows also tends to display .js files with a relatively innocent icon – like a gear icon. You rarely get the same warning message you see when installing .exe files from the internet.
When the attack occurs, it will open a decoy document in Microsoft Word that looks like this:
Photo courtesy of NakedSecurity.com.
Ultimately, the RAA virus will then encrypt your data using AES-256 encryption. You’ll then see a page explaining where to send the payment to unlock your content:
Your files have been encrypted by the RAA malware.
The AES-256 algorithm was used for encryption – the same encryption that is used to protect state secrets.
This means that restoring data is only possible by buying the key from us.
Buying the key is the simplest solution.
The virus demands 0.39 BTC, or about $250 USD.
Ultimately, this malware is not widespread. However, it’s still a significant event because it’s a dramatic new development in the world of ransomware. You no longer have to download an infected file to become victim of a devastating ransomware attack.
Consider downloading antivirus software or anti-malware software like Total System Care today.