Ransomware Definition

A type of malware that infects a computer and demands a ransom for its removal

Ransomware typically propagates like a conventional worm, entering a system through, for example, a downloaded file or a vulnerability in a network service. The program then restricts access to the computer system that it infects, and demands a ransom paid to the creator of the malware in order for the restriction to be removed. Some forms of ransomware encrypt files on the system’s hard drive, while some may simply lock the system and display messages intended to coax the user into paying.

Ramsomware goes beyond attempting to con its victims into handing over their money; it attempts to intimidate them. The extortion methods are expected to become harsher and more destructive.

Visit the NO MORE RANSOM website to get the latest tools and advice on how to retrieve encrypted data without having to pay the criminals – a collaborative project by Law Enforcement and IT Security Companies.

Also view the list of Local Resources that can assist Internet users in South Africa.