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Old 09-05-2016, 06:52 AM   #1
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Ransom ware

Have any of you ever been hit with ransom ware? I got an e-mail in my office threatening me with ransom ware if I don't pay a certain amount of bitcoins. I'm not sure if this is just some scam or is it a real threat. Anyone had any experience with this sort of thing?
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Old 09-05-2016, 07:06 AM   #2
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What virus protection do you run? Is anything happening or just an email.

This works pretty good for free. https://www.malwarebytes.com/mwb-download/ May have to run it in safe mode if you are having problems already.
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Old 09-05-2016, 07:07 AM   #3
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An email threat doesn't sound to me like you're lock out of your PC or cannot open files which normally Ransom Ware usually does when it takes over your PC.

Read through THIS thoroughly to understand more about Ransom Ware and how to get rid of it and prevent it from attacking you.

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Old 09-05-2016, 07:46 AM   #4
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In most cases the Ransom Ware threat is immediate.

Last year I had this happen to me. All my files were encrypted and I couldn't open anything. As soon as I tried to open something a screen popped up with instructions on how to get the encryption code to unlock my files.

I decided not to pay a ransom.

Normally you think you can recover you computer to the original configuration but when I went to do this it appeared that the hackers put in their own PW to do this.

I had an extended warranty plan with Dell and they sent me a USB thumb drive with my original settings and software setup. Followed their instructions and got my computer up and running. Unfortunately I lost a large part of my files, I did have a fairly recent backup.
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Old 09-05-2016, 08:59 AM   #5
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In my situation I have gotten an e-mail that said my files will lock up at 8 PM tomorrow. The message actually said 06-09-16 so my first thought was that was back in June and nothing happened and then I remembered that in Europe they put the date first. I'm not sure if it's real or not. Quite likely it isn't but I'll run my malware programs and see if anything turns up.

Thanks for your suggestions.

Ed
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Old 09-05-2016, 09:07 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wnytaxman View Post
Have any of you ever been hit with ransom ware? I got an e-mail in my office threatening me with ransom ware if I don't pay a certain amount of bitcoins. I'm not sure if this is just some scam or is it a real threat. Anyone had any experience with this sort of thing?


It's a scam.
If they were serious, your computer would already be locked and there would be an 800 number on it for you to call. If you have good backups, you could ignore that one too and just rebuild your computer, but most people don't so you get to pay up or lose your data.

My suggestion to protect yourself is, have all your data on one or more physical drive(s) (external, thumb, whatever) and all your programs and only programs on your C: drive. Surf the web and check your web email without your data drives attached.
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Old 09-05-2016, 04:09 PM   #7
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This may be a good time to consider a good backup program, if you do not already have one. Locating your data files in a common folder, such as c:\data, or something like that, will allow you to take the folder for backups. This way, you're not backup up all of your programs and OS files... just the data. The time to do this is before you are hit by a catastrophic virus, ransomware, HD failure, etc. If your backups are current, you can restore the OS, reinstall the programs and then replace the data from your backup.
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Old 09-06-2016, 05:06 AM   #8
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They say the best offense is a good defense. Rather than use a free or cheap virus protection we buy Norton Security for all of our computers.

The company I worked for, a rather large communications company with a V in the name, sold some kind of protection along with their internet access. I'm not sure what it was but all of their computers had mandatory Symantec (Norton) anti-virus. They also encrypted every hard drive. That is a little overboard for home use and I must say a PIA to work with.
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Old 09-06-2016, 10:26 AM   #9
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As it turned out the threatening e-mail was a scam. It is still disconcerting to get something like that. We do use off site backup that backs up our servers four times a day so my only concern was just the downtime and the general aggravation. We do have all the normal security measures in place but if these bad guys can hack into the Pentagon then all of us are at risk. Sad commentary on our world today.
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Old 09-15-2016, 10:26 AM   #10
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It's a pretty good reason to use inexpensive computers without keeping too much sensitive data on it. Can you imagine paying, say $1000 for data, but only get access to the files you don't care about then being asked for another grand for more useless files? Kind of like getting a loved ones fingers sent to you after paying ransom. By the way, the middle finger costs $10,000. Arm? If you have to ask you can't afford it.
Since i began using computers back in the 80s I've been through about 20 o or so machines and almost always chalk the losses up to just the way life is. It's kind of similar to the feeling of losing your pet goldfish every few years,but you just go out and buy another and start over..
Amazing we can remember a time before computers.. Even more amazing that there are millions of youngins who have no idea what a computerless world is like.
What? Entertain myself without pixels? That's unheard of! I'll DIE!
The Mrs got hit with ransomware a few years back.. good reason to have redundancy in your life. She makes her living with a computer so she always has several backups ready to go.
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Old 09-15-2016, 07:22 PM   #11
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You can get free anti-ransomeware from Malware. Click Here for a chance to download it.
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