Security Alert - Email Viruses and Malware
As we all know, we must continually maintain vigilance to defend against the most recent viruses and malware. Recently, we have seen a high incidence of a virus called "Cryptolocker," "Cryptowall", or "Ransomware," and newer ones called "Cerber", and "Locky" that have been infecting computers recently.
In the most recent case, it's a .DOT file and one commonality is that the sender's name is also the subject of the e-mail, and it says that it's a "report." BUT: beware of all emails with attachments or suspicious headers and/or content.
Although it's impossible to protect against every threat, M.A. Polce Consulting customers who leverage our Spam Filtering services or who have a Managed Services Agreement are proactively being configured to protect against these new variants as they are discovered. M.A. Polce Consulting is currently blocking all emails with .rtf or .dot attachments.
Links in these emails point to a cryptolocker virus variant. The virus then acts by encrypting files with common extensions like .doc, .xls, and .pdf among others. Once the files are encrypted a popup tells you to supply a credit card to get your files unlocked. A previous variant disguises itself as an email from FedEx, UPS, or USPS, but there other variants out there as well, so we urge you all to be extra careful.
There are some ways to protect yourself:
1. Do not open attachments that you are unsure of.
2. Do not click on any links that you are unsure of. Open up a new browser and navigate to the website instead of relying on a link.
3. Ensure backups are being performed regularly on all your data. This is the only recovery method, besides paying the ransom, if you become infected.