The Swiss Government observed a Ransomware Info Day today, on May 19th, 2016. This is an initiative by the Swiss Internet Security Alliance to increase awareness regarding ransomware and help people protecting themselves from it. Microsoft Malware Protection Center (MMPC) announced via a tweet that Microsoft too has participated in the Swiss government’s initiative.
Ransomware Info Day
Ransomware is not a new threat on the block, now. However, with ever-emerging technologies, ransomware authors have found numerous ways to use technology to extort money. The most used way is to use encryption Trojans that are often known as ransomware. A typical ransomware makes the data of any individual or the company inaccessible to the owners.
To recover the data or make it accessible to the users, ransomware writers demand high amounts of money. Surveys across the globe suggest that the ransomware creators generate profits in the millions.
A recent study shows that for the past three months, the incidents of ransomware have increased significantly across the globe. The countries that are majorly affected by ransomware attacks are the United States, Italy, and Canada.
Due to the global ransomware incidents, the Swiss government, along with some industry players are holding the Ransomware Info Day, as part of the ransomware awareness campaign.
On the occasion of Ransomware Info Day, the Swiss government has published some FAQs to make users aware of such threats and protect from those. The authorities have given 3 tips to protect against ransomware.
- Be watchful: Open e-mails only if they are sure that they are legitimate. Invoices, scans, faxes from unknown senders should be deleted. Ask in doubt with the sender!
- Back up your data: Backup your data regularly to an external hard drive that is not permanently attached to your computer. Close it only when you just create a backup and store it separately from the computer.
- Keep your system up to date: Almost all software vendors regularly publish updates for your programs. These eliminate errors and weaknesses and the best defense against viruses, worms and cyber criminals. Install updates promptly.