Beyond Email: 5 Alternative Ways to Fall Victim to Ransomware

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Ransomware Distribution Through Social Media Channels

Like email phishing campaigns, cyber attackers can run elaborate social media phishing scams to distribute ransomware via social media spam. Just by clicking the wrong social media link, an end user can fall victim to dangerous malware, costing money and even online reputations. From malicious links embedded in Facebook videos and Twitter messages, to fraudulent apps and fake links to celebrity profiles, social media users are lured daily by this type of nefarious bait.

Ransomware, without a doubt, is dominating the cyber-threat landscape by holding critical systems and data hostage in industries ranging from health care and finance to government and energy. Ransomware is a class of malware that, when distributed to a system, renders victims' systems unusable by encrypting computers and data or by locking applications. The attacker's goal is to blackmail the victim into paying a ransom in exchange for decryption keys, allowing them to regain control of their systems and data.

Most information and reports about ransomware, however, have focused on phishing as a conduit for ransomware delivery and often overlook other distribution methods in use. Attackers are becoming craftier with their methods to spread malware that encrypts files and locks data, blindsiding victims before they even realize they have been attacked.

So while organizations and individuals are performing everyday tasks – like running their businesses in the cloud and using social media – alternative ways to receive ransomware, which don't require victims to open a phishing email, also pose a serious threat. In this slideshow, Aditya Sood, PhD., director of security and Elastica Cloud Threat Labs at Blue Coat, discusses five alternative ways that organizations can fall victim to ransomware and offers advice on how they can protect themselves.


Related Topics : Unisys, Stimulus Package, Security Breaches, Symantec, Electronic Surveillance

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