The National Crime Agency (NCA) issued an alert last week, Two-week opportunity for UK to reduce threat from powerful computer attack , and as such gave the country a two week period to protect itslef from the virus that could give hackers access to sensitive information, which potentionally could cost the UK economy millions of pounds.
The NCA, states that users have been encouraged to “protect themselves against powerful malicious software” by checking that thier anti-virus software is up-to-date, and running scans to ensure that all applications are running correctly.
The move comes after the FBI in America was successful in disrupting a hacking network, making security updates by users particularly effective in the short term.
The viruses, known as GOZeuS and CryptoLocker, hide within attachments in e-mails that when opened give computer access to hackers, who use the software to scan devices for valuable information. They then “lock” the computer and demand a ransom from the user, it is extremely difficult to unlock the computer again.
These viruses are extremely sophisticated, and all users should be very careful. ThreeNIne advise that you ensure all your data is backed up to a disconnected external hard drive, and you have adequate anti-virus protection in place. We highly recommend Avast – Internet Security .
These virus may not show themselves immediately, due to the fact that they enable the attackers to remotely monitor your system, and provide access to your file system. The attackers will then decide whether you have something worth holding to ransom. Only then would you get the notice on your screen. Your personal information may still end up in the wrong hands, regardless of if they choose to ransom.
The attackers will largely target business users, but this is not to say individuals won’t be affected, especially small businesses.
UK-based internet awareness group Get Safe Online also posted on its own website, asking users to pay attention to the advice and take advantage of this event to improve their security.
If you would like any further advice about how you or your business can counter any effects of the GOZeus or CryptoLocakker virus then give us a call on 08432894539 or contact us