What is it? Ransomware is a type of malicious software that blocks access to data until a ransom is paid and displays a message requesting payment to unlock it.
Prevent you from accessing Windows.
Encrypt files so you can't use them.
Stop certain apps from running (like your web browser).
There is no guarantee that paying the fine or doing what the ransomware tells you will give access to your PC or files again.
What can you do to prevent this from happening?
1. Make sure all security software is up to date
2. Make sure all your software is up to date
3. DO NOT open any emails from people or companies that you are not familiar with. And if you do, DO NOT click on any links or attachments included in the email.
4. Back up your important files regularly
Most computer users don't take full advantage of the computer Mouse. Here are just a couple of things you can do with you mouse in case you haven't discovered them yet.
1. Many programs allow you to highlight all or portions of text using the Shift key and the mouse.
a. click at the beginning of the text.
b. hold down the Shift key...
c. while holding the Shift key, click at the end of the text that you want to highlight.
Many persons find this helpful if they have problems dragging the cursor to highlight.
2. Most of us know that you can select a word by double-clicking on the word. If you want to highlight the whole paragraph or sentence, click the mouse button three times on any word.
We will add more mouse tips in the near future.
You may receive a phone call from a “Microsoft” expert or a security expert working for “Microsoft” stating that they have been monitoring your computer and you have been hacked or you are infected with a malware. They will offer to fix your problems. DON’T!!! It is a scam, a hoax! They will want you to give them remote access to your computer to “fix” the problem. If you allow them to do so, they will take your computer hostage by downloading malware. STOP! HANG UP THE... PHONE!
No legitimate IT security company - certainly not Microsoft - is ever going to call you in this way. For one thing, they can't even tell that your PC is infected. They've got your name from the phone book, or any one of the thousands of marketing lists on which your details probably reside.
During your conversation, don't provide any personal information. This is a good rule for any unsolicited call. And certainly never hand over your credit card or bank details. Just don't do it.
If you have been a victim, first of all, don't beat yourself up. This could happen to anyone (and does). You probably want to change all your passwords and usernames, starting with your main email account and any bank and credit card logins. It probably is a good idea to have your computer cleaned up with up-to-date security software.
If you are looking to save money, consider buying a used or a refurbished computer. A refurbished computer is a computer that has been returned to the company and has been checked out by them and deemed to be in good condition. They cannot sell it again as new. So buying one of these computers instead of a new computer can save you a substantial amount of money.