We’re seeing a frightening rise in ransomware attacks in 2021 compared to 2020. It’s becoming a popular form of cyberattack, affecting corporations and government units.
Kia Motors was one of the most notable victims this year. The brand paid around 404 Bitcoins, which were around $20 million at the time. Acer, CNA Financial Corp, and the Washington DC Police Department also experienced a ransomware attack. Even small businesses and individuals can receive this kind of threat, too. What do you do when this attack happens to you?
A solution to this is either get ransomware removal services, pay the ransom, or deal with it manually. Read on to find out more.
1. Remove the Ransomware Manually
Your first option is to deal with the attack yourself. If you have an IT team or enough knowledge to handle it, follow our instructions below.
Detect a Ransomware Attack
How do you know you’re under attack? You have to know the signs that there’s ransomware on your computer. The first clear sign is an alert from your anti-virus software. However, some malware bypasses this security to avoid sounding the alarm. Check the file extension as well. Encrypting files changes it to an unfamiliar combination of letters.
You can see another sign with the increase of disk or processor activity. It can state that ransomware is working in the background.
Remove the File Encryption Software
To warn you, removing ransomware from your computer might close your other options. For instance, paying the ransom might not work anymore. Some attackers can only provide the decryption keys through the software.
That aside, let’s get onto the removal process. First, disconnect your computer from the internet and other wired or wireless connections. It isolates the infected device, preventing ransomware from spreading. Run a thorough scan of your computer and isolate or delete the malicious or suspicious files. You may do so using anti-malware software or through manual removal.
Restore Your Backup
Note that it’s easier to remove ransomware from your computer. Decrypting the files yourself is almost impossible. You can restore your control over your device, but there’s no recovering the data. Only the attacker holds the key to decrypting your files. If you have a backup, that might be your one chance. Everything that you didn’t back up is gone forever unless you saved it somewhere else.
Your backup must also be a version of your data and applications that don’t contain ransomware. Otherwise, you would only be reintroducing the malware to your computer.
Use a Decryption Tool
Find out the type of ransomware you have. There might already be a tool to reverse its effects. Security experts are developing solutions to counter the latest types of ransomware. These tools attempt to decrypt the encrypted files, allowing you to regain access.
It’s up to you to find the best tool for you, but make sure it’s legitimate. Some are fake, containing extra malware that will inflict more harm on your computer. Find a trusted source. You may have to pay for the program or subscription, but it can be cheaper than paying the ransom.
2. Get Ransomware Removal Services
Not everyone can tinker with their computer, especially in a panic-inducing situation. Good thing is that you can get ransomware removal services instead.
A ransomware recovery service helps you find the best solution. They are well-trained and knowledgeable about the latest trends in malware. They will explore every available option until they get it right. Even if you’re a techy person, chances are the best ransomware removal services still know more than you. They can keep your files safe while assessing and isolating the attack.
They can also work with you to give you ransomware removal advice. They can teach you how to remove the ransomware and provide you with the tools needed. Their services aren’t finished until they have assessed your security, too. A dedicated team determines the vulnerabilities in your defenses that allowed the attack. When needed, they can also plug the gaps they find. This way, you get to improve your security and avoid ending up in the same situation again.
3. Pay the Ransom
Ransomware usually has a deadline for payment. Once it passes, either the demand doubles or the files get destroyed. Should you pay the ransom instead? The general opinion is that you shouldn’t. Law enforcement is also against this option as it encourages crime. It might even be illegal as some might consider it funding criminal activity.
However, paying might be tempting because it can be cheaper than the recovery process. It reduces downtime, which might take months for corporations. You can even negotiate with the attacker to reduce the demand. If you’re considering this option, correspond with the police first. Make sure you’re aware of the realities of ransomware, as well.
You Might Not Get All Your Files Back
There’s no guarantee that you’re getting all your files back after paying. Only around 8% of victims recovered all the encrypted data. On average, organizations get back around 65% of files. Paying the ransom doesn’t always pay.
Decryption Still Takes Weeks
Even when you have the keys, recovering your data can still take weeks. They might even fail or crash. Some victims have had to build a decryption program by extracting the keys from the attacker-provided tool.
The Attacker Might Still Have Your Data
The cybercriminals might already have stolen your files during the attack. In this case, they may still have a copy of your data even after you’ve already paid and decrypted your files.
Prevent a Ransomware Attack
Prevent attacks from happening to avoid costs and headaches from a ransomware attack. Strengthen your security protocols, create frequent backups, and invest in your team. Should anything happen though, don’t hesitate to contact the experts. Our ransomware removal services are ready to help you get out of this tricky situation. Contact us today to learn more.