Computer Worm Log Entry# 4 – WannaCry

Worm #4:  The message “Oops, your important files are encrypted.” or “Hello, dear friend! All you files have been ENCRYPTED.” displays on your screen and a ransom is demanded.

Visiting Geeks: These are classified as ransomware. Some computers at the City of Atlanta, Baltimore’s 911 system and Boeing were all attacked recently with a crypto-virus derived from a vulnerability uncovered by the NSA.  This type of malware is classified as a WORM.  Once a computer is infected, this WORM will seek out other computers on the same local network and try to infect them as well.  Phishing is the typical way of gaining entry.  Data is encrypted and cannot be recovered unless ransom is paid. To protect your computer, be vigilant on incoming emails, apply latest Microsoft security updates as well as having a real-time anti-virus protection, plus a off-site/cloud backup for your data.

Who Needs Backup?

The answer is everyone, except the few who don’t care losing data, be that documents, contacts, favorites, pictures, tax returns, accounting records….  In one incidence, a grandfather asks us to recover a file with first sounds made by his new born grandson.

Data loss is inevitable.  The causes are plenty: hardware problems, system update malfunctions, malware, virus, ransomware, fast fingers….  The pain will be much less if there’s a backup. However logical this sounds, many still don’t backup. Why not?

Nowadays, backing up is easier than ever.  If backing up to an external storage device or setting up local backup software is too complicated, welcome to the age of cloud backup.  It’s real easy and cheap.

Carbonite and Backblaze are two U.S.-based cloud backup companies that majority of our customers use. For personal use, Carbonite is $6/month ($72 / year) and Backblaze is $5/month ($50 / year).  Both provide unlimited storage.  Carbonite backs up one user’s data by default and Backblaze backs up all users in the same computer.  They both work in the background automatically.  There are many other cloud backup companies but either one of these would be excellent choice.