April 13, 2016

Jigsaw Ransomware: Anything But A Game

By Chris Brunau

“Your computer files have been encrypted. Your photos, videos, documents, etc….. But don’t worry! I have not deleted them, yet.”

That’s the ominous (yet strangely *reassuring*) message users are receiving after coming across Jigsaw, the latest ransomware threat. Right, nothing to worry about here.

Jigsaw encrypts, then progressively deletes files until the ransom of $150 is paid, according to PCWorld. The ransomware deletes a single file after the first hour, then deletes more and more per hour until the 72 hour mark, when all of your remaining files are deleted.

Luckily, a decrypter has already been set up and hosted by BleepingComputer.com. According to BleepingComputer, the criminals behind this ransomware follow through on their threats, unlike some variants in the past.

By now, it probably seems like a new ransomware threat is popping up every week. California lawmakers have decided to take a stand against ransomware attacks through a proposed bill which would prosecute cyber criminals under a statute similar to extortion, according to NBC News.

So how can you protect yourself against ransomware? A proactive approach is your best bet:

  • Education: Understanding ransomware is the first step. The ability to avoid ransomware hinges on recognizing and understanding the threat before it’s too late. Make sure everyone in your organization understands the threat and what they should look out for.
  • Security: Antivirus software should be considered essential for any business to protect against ransomware and other risks. Ensure your security software is up to date, as well, in order to protect against newly identified threats. Keep all business applications patched and updated in order to minimize vulnerabilities.
  • Backup: Modern total data protection solutions, like Datto, take snapshot-based, incremental backups as frequently as every five minutes to create a series of recovery points. If your business suffers a ransomware attack, this technology allows you to roll-back your data to a point-in-time before the corruption occurred.

As always, taking the proper precautions is the best way to protect yourself from any form of ransomware. In the event you’re attacked, the best way to avoid paying a ransom is to have a proper business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) solution featuring up-to-date backups. This will allow you to restore your data to a point in time before the infection, and retain your precious data. To learn more about all things ransomware, including the common types, how it is spread and how to prevent it, download our eBook: The Business Guide To Ransomware.

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