Beware – ransomware is still out there! CryptoLocker, CryptoWall and CryptoVirus

Beware – ransomware is still out there! CryptoLocker, CryptoWall and CryptoVirus

Beware - ensure you have safeguards on your computerDo you regularly back up your data? We hope so, because there are some nasty viruses out there, finding new and innovative ways to encrypt your data. If you don’t back up your data then a vicious virus may put a halt to your business.

CryptoLocker was, and still is, a ransomware Trojan. It targets computers running Microsoft Windows and infiltrates itself via infected email attachments or existing botnet. As soon as it is in, it works its way through your documents encrypting files so that you will be unable to open them.

Can CrytoLocker be removed?
Yes

What about my encrypted files?
This is altogether trickier. When you try to open your files, a message will appear asking you to pay via Bitcoin or a pre-paid cash voucher by a stated deadline. It threatens to delete the private key (that is the only way to decrypt your files) if the deadline and payment requests are not met. Some companies paid the ransom, others did not and were unable to access their files.

Screenshot of CryptoWall
Cryptowall image
 What has happened since last year?
CryptoLocker has been isolated and the security company involved in this process managed to access the private keys and set up an online tool for recovering files without paying the ransom.

How much money was extorted?
It is estimated that the group behind CryptoLocker received $3 million.

Are there other ‘nasties’ out there?
Yes – CryptoLocker may have been isolated and a way found to decrypt files for free, but CryptoWall and CryptoVirus are both alive and kicking and cutting a swathe through computers the world over.

If you want to find out more about the viruses that are attacking computers then contact us.

What should you do?
Install anti-virus software and regularly back up your data. Call Matrix It Solutions, IT support in Fareham on 01329 888444 or email us on moreinfo@mtxit.com and we can advise you on the most effective software to stop this happening to your computer.

Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003 no longer supported by Microsoft

Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003 no longer supported by Microsoft

act now image

Act now if you have Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003

Do you use Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003? There is a good chance that you will, as it is one of the most popular operating systems in use by small and large companies. Did you know that 61 percent of businesses are still using Windows Server 2003.*

14th July 2015 saw the ‘end of life’ for this particular system. It will no longer be supported with updates or patches from Microsoft.

Although your computer may be working fine now, as time passes and the system ages, it will become inefficient and its performance will deteriorate. If this happens, your data and IT security may be threatened and put at risk.

So what’s the answer?
The answer is to migrate to a new solution. As Microsoft said that they will no longer be supporting their own Microsoft’s Window Server 2003, then it is now time to change.

What are your options?

The first thing we would suggest, is to give us a call. We can talk you through the options. These include:

  • Cloud – move all of your data to ‘the cloud’.
  • On premise – take advantage of virtualisation.
  • Hybrid – a combination of the above.

Finding the best end result will depend on speed, ease of migration, desired functionality and cost.

Whichever route you decide to choose, you need to find out the best solution for your business. We will assess where your processes and programs are located. Workloads can then be categorised into: type of application, criticality, complexity, risk, and infrastructure type. Anything deemed ‘critical’, is high priority and should be moved immediately.

If you are not sure whether your company uses Windows Server 2003/R2, then we can help. Please call us and we can find out which server you are using. If it is Windows Server 2003/R2 then we can help you to find an alternative.

Contact us
Call us on 01329 888444 or email Matrix IT Solutions for a free consultation about migrating from Windows Server 2003/R2.

*Source – Spiceworks report, “The Great IT Upgrade”, which examines the economic and technical impacts of end of life on IT departments.