Computer users and software developers are engaged in an ongoing war against hackers and malware developers. As is the case in all such struggles, there is a constant effort on both sides to counter the other. New methods of attack prompt the development of new countermeasures. Likewise, the appearance of new defenses spurs development of attack technology, and the cycle is ongoing. The other end of the problem lies with the decisions computer users make, and failures to apply simple common-sense.
Backups For Everything
A truth engineers know from first principles is this: things can go wrong anytime and usually at the worst possible time. So before ransomware removal and recovery of lost data becomes a necessity, common-sense measures will prevent attack before it happens. To start with, regular backup copying of all data is imperative. Purchasing an external backup drive or two is cheap at four times the price. File backup mitigates the effects of malware attack and facilitates recovery after the drive is purged.
Do Everything By Hand
A feature of convenience included in the Windows and Mac operating systems is automatic updating. This allows a computer to immediately install the latest versions of applications running on the system. Unfortunately, this convenience also allows a ransomware virus to enter a computer through a counterfeit updating file. Therefore, computer users should always select for manual updating. This may be tedious, but it gives the user complete gatekeeper control before a file is automatically installed onto the machine.
Beware Greeks Bearing Attachments
Finally, the most common-sense defense measure is to never open file attachments on e-mails from unknown senders. These are still a primary vector for malware transmission. Seemingly innocent “junk” e-mails or ones from supposedly legitimate sources are almost always the Trojan Horses carrying a virus. And all it takes is one careless mouse click to wreak havoc on a person’s machine. User caution shuts off this gateway and remains one of the most effective preventative measures that can be taken to fend off any form of malware attack.
Similarly, never download any file from a suspicious website. Often, these pages are traps waiting to ensnare the unwary. A game or video file might be a ransomware virus in disguise. Also, pop-up ads might be disguised malware waiting for a careless mouse-click to be activated. Be certain of the legitimacy of a website before downloading anything off of it or clicking on any pop-up.