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Off topic- Friendly Tech PSA about new-ish computer virus

Hey guys

I work IT for a school district and yesterday we noticed that one of our share drives got real messed up. It turns out all the documents that staff have posted here have become encrypted. Now this is not a new thing, as some of you may be familiar with cryptolocker, but this variant seems to be attacking share drives connected to computers. Also because of it's new-ness, it only seems like a few anti-virus providers have named it in recent patches. In my research I can tell you that Microsoft Security Essentials/Forefront Endpoint Protection have not really named it yet. Cryptolocker was also cracked from what I remember, so if you are hit with that now you can decrypt your documents without having to pay anyone to do so. However, Cryptowall is new and fresh and has not been cracked. Just like Cryptolocker, Cryptowall run's silently until it's done encrypting your data then lets you know what has already happened. By then you are already on your way to having a bad day. Below is a few tips for you, but there is much more detailed information on prevention and recovery on the interwebs. I decided to keep it short. Just remember, just like riding a motorcycle, everyone on the internet wants to harm you, so always be careful what you click

Anyways, What to look out for!

-Suspicious Flash or other 3rd party plugin updates

-Emails containing attachments that you didn't expect to recieve

-Suspicious looking websites

And the list I'm sure goes on but that's what I know of from my reading thus far

How to protect yourself:

-Stay up to date on your windows update's

-Stay up to date on Antivirus Updates

-Have a malware removal tool handy (my personal favorite is malwarebytes)

-Use removable media to do back ups

That should be stuff you already hear, but there is a reason for it. We are fortunate enough to have backups that run constantly and recovered probably 90% of the encrypted data. However, if you are a home user not doing back ups, all those sweet cat and car pictures are now gone. That's it. Go forth and be smart

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-Jeff

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