ransomwareRansomware is malicious software that is running rampant with our files, documents, and other sensitive information. It’s taking our assets from right under our fingertips. But, do you know what the worst part about it is?

You don’t even know it’s there.

The Basics of Ransomware

Ransomware can install covertly onto a computer or device without the user’s approval. The malicious software will then infect the device. The level of ransomware will vary with the skill of its creator. The encryption sophistication behind some of these computer file locks are extremely difficult, if not impossible, to decrypt.

Ransomware will then attempt to coerce the user into spending money to unlock his or her computer. These files can be disguised, and can appear as alert messages that are an attempt to portray legitimacy. Here is an example below:

“Your computer visited a website that contained illegal content. You must pay $100 to unlock your computer.

To Pay or Not to Pay?

The user will be provided with a choice: pay for it to go away, or lose all personal information and the computer. Do not pay, and contact the authorities immediately. Sometimes the amount may be small enough to make it seem like it’s worth paying for it all to go away. If the user decides to pay, then there are zero guarantees that anything will be given back for paying.


Encryption is the process in which data and information are encoded in such a manner that only authorized parties can successfully read it. Depending on the sophistication of the encryption, if ransomware released encrypts the user’s files or computer to lock it, then the user may not be able to retrieve such files back. Decryption is a difficult, and sometimes impossible, procedure for ransomware recovery.


Stop attacks before they become a huge problem. Private security can help our businesses stay open by keeping their files and sensitive information protected. Any form of security is a deterrent for many hackers. Those who are not protected significantly increase their chances of being targeted by ransomware. Ransomware security is improving every day to help keep businesses and personal devices safe. Protect your information, data, and critical infrastructure before the attack occurs.

Government Acknowledgement

On March 31, 2016, The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) issued an alert warning of an increase in ransomware incidents. The warning advised people to report these incidents.

Even the Federal Trade Commission has already dedicated the Fall Technology Series to Ransomware. The event will take place on September 7, 2016 at the Constitution Center in Washington DC. The event will focus on this malicious cyber-criminal strategy which uses fear to get people to waste money.