There’s been news going around about a recent cyber-attack that spanned over one hundred countries and infected hundreds of thousands of PC’s. This ransomware is known as “wannacry”. If you are not familiar with ransomware, this type of cyberattack is when a thief or hacker gains control of your computer and all the files contained within it. They then ask you to pay a sum of money in order to gain back access to your PC.
Oftentimes these hackers are able to gain access to a computer through a link the user may have clicked on or through outdated software not updated to protect against more recent threats. The easiest way to start protecting yourself against these types of cyber-attacks is to make sure your computer software remains up to date. If it’s tough to remember to manually check and update it, turn on auto updates so you’ll never have to worry about it. Make sure your computer has anti-virus software and keep that updated as well. You may also want to routinely back up your files and keep a copy of the backup not located or connected to your computer at all.
As we’ve mentioned in previous fraud prevention posts, be sure you don’t click on any links that you don’t recognize and don’t download anything from a person or site you don’t recognize. When in doubt it’s always best to play it safe and don’t click. If there’s any question, contact the company or person directly through a method not related to the original point of contact. For example call the number located on a business’ website, not the number listed in an email sent to you that could be fraudulent.