Ransomware Returns To Ask For More - InformationWeek
Mobile // Mobile Applications
05:33 PM
Keith Ferrell
Keith Ferrell

Ransomware Returns To Ask For More

How much is your data worth to you? That's the question behind ransomware, an aggressive bit of data extortion that's making some noise again.

How much is your data worth to you? That's the question behind ransomware, an aggressive bit of data extortion that's making some noise again.If you discovered that crucial files had been kidnapped, encrypted and held hostage by crooks who deny you access to your information unless you pay up, would you?

You say it depends on the price?

How does $120 sound? That's the question crooks hope to pose to you.

It's been awhile since ransomware was in the news, but the digital extortion scheme seems to be making a comeback.

According to Sophos, a new ransomware surge is spreading via malicious PDF files.

Once the ransomware -- identified as Troj/Ransom-U --is launched, and target files encrypted, the recipient receives a strongly worded "request" to read a newly delivered txt file on the desktop, then follow the instructions for getting in touch with the extortionists.

Do that, and you'll be "asked" for $120 in order to get the key to decrypting your information.

The scam targets only Windows systems, and can encrypt files with the following extensions, again according to Sophos:

.jpg, .jpeg, .psd, .cdr, .dwg, .max, .mov, .m2v, .3gp, .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .ppt, .pptx, .rar, .zip, .mdb, .mp3, .cer, .p12, .pfx, .kwm, .pwm, .txt, .pdf, .avi, .flv, .lnk, .bmp, .1cd, .md, .mdf, .dbf, .mdb, .odt, .vob, .ifo, .mpeg, .mpg, .doc, .docx, .xls, and .xlsx.

Once a file has been encrypted, the suffix ENCODED will be added to the filename.

$120 may not sound like a lot to pay to get your data back, especially if you're in a panic over losing it, but it's a lot more than simply instructing your people just to steer clear of PDFs, and to make sure they're running the latest version of Adobe Reader, which offers some protection, for those PDFs they simply must have.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of the Cloud Report
As the use of public cloud becomes a given, IT leaders must navigate the transition and advocate for management tools or architectures that allow them to realize the benefits they seek. Download this report to explore the issues and how to best leverage the cloud moving forward.
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of November 6, 2016. We'll be talking with the InformationWeek.com editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll