CryptoLocker Hits Nyack

Dated: October 23 2013

Views: 3411

There's a new virus making its way to a computer near you unless you are careful.  The name of the virus is CryptoLocker and it is "ransomware."

If this virus infects your computer, it will encrypt all your personal files (*.doc, *.xls, *.jpg, *.tiff, etc) and you will not be able to access them unless you pay a ransom to decrypt the files.  It is important to understand that Technology Services will not be able to decrypt any infected file because this virus uses an encryption key known only to the makers of the virus.  

CryptoLocker is a ransomware program that was released around the beginning of September 2013. This ransomware will encrypt certain files using a mixture of RSA & AES encryption. When it has finished encrypting your files, it will display a CryptoLocker payment program that prompts you to send a ransom of either $100 or $300 in order to decrypt the files. This screen will also display a timer stating that you have 96 hours, or 4 days, to pay the ransom or it will delete your encryption key and you will not have any way to decrypt your files. This ransom must be paid using MoneyPak vouchers or Bitcoins. Once you send the payment and it is verified, the program will decrypt the files that it encrypted.
This infection is typically spread through emails sent to company email addresses that pretend to be customer support related issues from Fedex, UPS, DHS, etc. These emails would contain a zip attachment that when opened would infect the computer. These zip files contain executables that are disguised as PDF files as they have a PDF icon and are typically named something like FORM_101513.exe or FORM_101513.pdf.exe. Since Microsoft does not show extensions by default, they look like normal PDF files and people open them.
Forewarned is forearmed - just be careful and make sure the email is coming from a trusted source and is not "out of the ordinary" for that sender.  
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Diane Mitchell

I am a Licensed Real Estate Associate Broker and work full time helping people to achieve their dreams of home ownership or their dreams of selling their home or both. I love working with buyers and s....

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