Ransomware stops you from using your PC
It holds your PC or files for “ransom”.
Hackers exploiting malicious software stolen from the National Security Agency executed damaging cyber attacks on Friday that hit dozens of countries worldwide, forcing Britian’s public health system to send patients away, freezing computers at Russia’s Interior Ministry and wreaking havoc on tens of thousands of computers elsewhere.
Transmitted via email, the malicious software locked British hospitals out of their computer systems and demanded ransom before users could be let back in — with a threat that data would be destroyed if the demands were not met.
Impact of Ransomware Cyber Attack
■ Experts said that the attackers may pocket more than $1 billion from individuals worldwide before the deadline ran out to unlock the machines.
■ In Asia, there were widespread reports of attacks at universities, with students locked out of their theses and final papers as graduation loomed.
■ Over all, more than 45,000 attacks were recorded in as many as 74 countries.
Cybersecurity experts identified the malicious software as a variant of ransomware known as WannaCry. Workers at hospitals and companies across the globe were confronted with a message on their monitors that read,
■ Hackers appeared to have exploited a flaw in Microsoft’s Windows operating system that was first discovered by the United States National Security Agency.
■ Microsoft issued a new patch for its Windows software after the attack.
■ At least 45 British hospitals and other medical facilities seemed to be hit hardest by the attacks, which blocked doctors from gaining access to patient files and caused emergency rooms to divert patients. Prime Minister Theresa May said there was no evidence that patient data had been compromised.
■ Companies like Deutsche Bahn, the German transport giant; Telefónica, a Spanish telecommunications firm; and Renault, the French automaker, said that some of their systems had been affected, though no major outages had yet been reported across the region’s transports or telecom networks.
■ The Russian Interior Ministry confirmed in a statement that 1,000 of its computers had also been hit.
■ The Chinese online security company Qihoo 360 issued a warning about the virus, saying that many networks there had been hit and that some computers used to mine Bitcoin in china were among those infected.
What does Ransomware do?
There are different types of ransomware. However, all of them will prevent you from using your PC normally, and they will all ask you to do something before you can use your PC.
They can target any PC users, whether it’s a home computer, endpoints in an enterprise network, or servers used by a government agency or healthcare provider.
- Prevent you from accessing Windows.
- Encrypt files so you can’t use them.
- Stop certain apps from running (like your web browser).
Ransomware will demand that you pay money (a “ransom”) to get access to your PC or files. We have also seen them make you complete surveys.
There is no guarantee that paying the fine or doing what the ransomware tells you will give access to your PC or files again.