How Does A Ransomware Attack Work?

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How Does A Ransomware Attack Work?
mohamed_hassan / Pixabay

The world of digital technology has provided many huge benefits to businesses over recent years. It has helped to increase efficiency, boost growth, raise awareness, and improve overall success levels even for smaller businesses. However, modern technology has also brought with it a number of new risks that businesses have to deal with, one of which is ransomware.

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Cybercriminals these days have become adept at using a range of high-tech and sophisticated methods to try and conduct their illegal online activities. This has had a huge negative impact on businesses that have not taken steps to protect themselves from this type of activity. When it comes to ransomware attacks, businesses can do everything from educating employees and backing up data to the cloud to using ransomware removal software. In this article, we will give an overview of how ransomware attacks work.

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What Do Ransomware Attacks Involve?

There are a number of steps that are involved when a ransomware attack takes place. Some of the main ones are:

Infecting Your Systems

The first thing that takes place is the infecting of the business’s systems, and this can be done via a number of methods such as phishing scams, attachments that are infected, and other digital methods. Once the ransomware is installed, it contacts the cybercriminals’ command and control server to generate cryptographic keys, which are then used on the local system. It then begins to encrypt the files that it comes across on local systems and networks.

Making Demands to Decrypt Files

Once this is done, the cybercriminals are ready to make their demands in order to decrypt the business’s data and files. This is where the business receives displayed instructions on what needs to be done in order to regain control of their files and data – a digital blackmail note, as it were. Threats are also part of this display, ensuring the business is clear on the fact that data and files will be destroyed if the demands are not met. Sadly, some businesses believe they have no other option but to give in to the criminals, but even after meeting their demands, the files are no decrypted in close to half of all cases.

End Result Depending on Action Taken

Next comes the end result depending on the action taken by the business. Some pay the ransom, and the files and data may or may not be decrypted after doing this. Others take steps to remove the infected files from their systems and then using a clean backup to restore them, but this is only possible if you actually have a clean backup. This is why it is important to use methods such as cloud backup solutions so that you can restore files if you are hit by a ransomware attack. Some businesses try to negotiate with the criminals, but this is usually a waste of time.

In a nutshell, these are the main components involved in a typical ransomware attack.

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