Meet Locky – The Most Dangerous Form of Ransomware
Ransomware attacks spiked in 2016, with over 634 million more attacks than the year before. Locky, the most prevalent form of ransomware today, accounted for about 500 million of these attacks. In second place came Peyta, but it was well behind with only 32 million attacks.
Locky was born in February of 2016 and by the third quarter of that year, it was used in nearly all of malicious email attacks. The developers consistently update their software to evade security tools, implement anti-analysis features, and change distribution techniques, which accounts for this particular malware’s dominance.
Like most ransomware, Locky requires payment in Bitcoin currency, which helps to hide Locky affiliates’ identities from law enforcement. The amount requested typically ranges from $400 to $800. However, some attackers are realizing how valuable business data can be and are starting to charge more. Keep in mind that paying the ransom is no guarantee that your data will be returned to you as often victims are the guinea pigs of new versions that they actually cannot decrypt.
Being prepared and educated are the only preventative measures against ransomware. About 23% of recipients open phishing messages, with 11% actually clicking the attachment. 50 percent of users open the emails in less than an hour, which is faster than administrators can detect a problem. If you don’t have proper backups when your system becomes infected, it is already too late.
For help in thwarting ransomware like Locky, contact CyberStreams an experienced provider of IT security managed services. We are in Seattle, Bellevue and Western Washington and can be reached at (425) 274-1121 or firstname.lastname@example.org.