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‘WannaCry’ Ransomware Takes the World Hostage

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‘WannaCry’ Ransomware Takes the World Hostage

The latest trend in virus development is the creation of ransomware, a type of virus that takes command of a computer system and holds it hostage

Online PR News – 14-May-2017 – The latest trend in virus development is the creation of ransomware, a type of virus that takes command of a computer system and holds it hostage until the victim pays a stated ransom. Over the last year a number of these types of viruses have popped up, but this most recent one ranks among the most potent. While most infections have been reported around Russia and Singapore, the virus has been spreading like wildfire and has been powerful enough to breach over 16 hospitals in the UK.

This marks a worrying trend for any operating business in the world, as a system takeover by this type of virus will completely incapacitate all infected machines until either the ransom is paid or the machines are wiped. Part of the difficulty in dealing with the virus lies in the way it takes over the machine. The virus utilizes a highly-advanced form of encryption, which slowly locks down the entire machine under a password protected encryption vault. If the process is caught halfway through, it can be stopped. Once completed however, unless a user has access to elite encryption cracking software, the only way to get the machine running again is to either pay the ransom or completely wipe the drive and start fresh

As a result, the typical break-fix method most companies use to deal with IT problems is unable to effectively deal with ransomware. Since the user only realizes the machine has been hit upon completion of the encryption, its already too late.

Fortunately, for individuals looking to prevent a total lockdown, there is hope. IT managed service providers, such as Houston-based Impress Computers, equip clients networks with various defensive mechanisms. Among firewalls and anti-virus programs, one of the first lines of defense comes in the form of system monitoring software. The software is installed on all machines and provides real-time status updates on the health of each PC. As a result, technicians will receive an alert early on in the encryption process, and be able to deal with the virus before the encryption completes.

In the event that the virus is able to make it through all the extra layers of defense, the recovery time is also substantially improved under a managed service provider. With break-fix, many companies only have one or two on-site backups, or fail to consistently double-check that the backups are even functioning correctly. This becomes dangerous when ransomware is involved, as it is often capable of jumping onto the on-site backups and encrypting those on top of the rest of the system, leaving the company stranded in a potential total-data-loss situation. Under the protection of an IT support company however, backups and clones are regularly updated and maintained. As a result, if an infection occurs and wiping the machines becomes necessary, the IT company can utilize the clones the revive the machines and get running within a few hours.

While the internet and connectivity has brought about large positive changes to the world, it has also brought with it the capability of large scale crime and misconduct. As a result, it has become imperative that individual businesses strive to protect its systems from the dangers of an interconnected society. Companies looking for the peace of mind associated with a managed service provider have to look no further than Houstons very own Impress Computers. With an incredible track record (4.8-star rating and hundreds of reviews), its difficult to locate a better provider. The company has achieved great renown within the area as a result of its passionate, talented employees and its drive to provide the best possible service to its clients. Subsequently, Impress comes highly recommended and should be the first stop for any company looking to for the peace of mind that comes with outsourced IT management.

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Roland Parker
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