On June 2, 2014, the Department of Justice and the FBI announced a multinational effort to disrupt the GameOver Zeus botnet, believed to be responsible for the theft of millions of dollars from businesses and consumers in the U.S. and around the world.
GameOver Zeus is an extremely sophisticated type of malware designed specifically to steal banking and other credentials from the computers it infects. It’s predominately spread through spam e-mail or phishing messages.
The virus also distributes another particularly aggressive “malware” programme, called CryptoLocker, which encrypts all files on a target’s computer, including personal photographs, and then demands a “ransom” of about £300 within a specified time limit to unlock the file.
According to FBI estimates, nearly 250,000 computers worldwide have been infected with CryptoLocker since it emerged in April and it has so far been used to extort payments of more than $27m (£16m). Up to a million machines worldwide are thought to have been infected with GameOver Zeus.
Protect Your Computer From Malware
– Make sure you have updated antivirus software on your computer.
– Enable automated patches for your operating system and web browser.
– Have strong passwords, and don’t use the same passwords for everything.
– Use a pop-up blocker.
– Only download software—especially free software—from sites you know and trust (malware can also come in downloadable games, file-sharing programs, and customized toolbars).
– Don’t open attachments in unsolicited e-mails, even if they come from people in your contact list, and never click on a URL contained in an e-mail, even if you think it looks safe. Instead, close out the e-mail and go to the organization’s website directly.
Could Your Computer Be Infected?
– Your computer system operates very slowly.
– Your cursor moves erratically with no input from you.
– You notice unauthorized logins to your bank accounts or unauthorized money transfers.
– Text-based chat windows appear on your computer’s desktop unexpectedly.
– Your computer files lock up and a ransom demand is made to unlock files.
Look guys, the amount of people that drop in pcs and laptops to us without any Anti-Virus or out-of-date Anti-Virus is scary. Up to a few months ago, I’d recommend free Anti-Virus software (MS Essentials) to people, but with the amount of security attacks coming out lately, people really need to secure their machines with good, strong anti-virus. A decent anti-virus will cost from about €40 upwards (gets cheaper the more licenses are bought).
Your computer, like your car needs to be serviced regularly (we reinstall our office workstations at least twice a year). It’s a pain, but it saves time and money in the long run. 80% of the machines dropped in here are very close to or actually have crashed completely. We had one in lately that got attacked by a virus and shut down the whole hard drive. Our file recovery software could not retrieve anything at all. You can imagine how the customer reacted when we told him all his photos and accounts were gone. He had an anti-virus on it that was 4 years out of date!
If you are confused by it all and need some advice, give us a call here in the office (051 560767) or drop us an email!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ronan is the Director and brains behind Bridge PC Repair. With over ten years experience in the technology industry, sure he knows it all.
Contact Ronan: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tele: 051 560767