Tag Archive: online security

lockyRansomware has been an enormous security problem in today’s digital age. The damage can spread to epic proportions for organizations which assets (e.g. user personal and financial data) rely on the web.

Earlier this month, the system of the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical was infected by ransomware that demanded a ransom totaling to a whopping US$3.6 million (*in bitcoin 9,000).

What is ransomware?

It’s kidnapping of data, wherein a hacker locks a user out of his own system by encrypting data before asking for a payment in the form of bitcoin before he can recover the files using the decryption key.

Joining the club is Locky, another flavor introduced by hackers, who are allegedly associated with one of the people behind Dridex, a notorious banking ransomware.

Both have the same modus of operation, that’s why.

Locky’s hackers send an email containing a Microsoft Word attachment, which disguises as an invoice that requires macro functions.

[Microsoft disabled macros by default for security reasons, which is why you will normally see a warning message if an attachment has macros.]

Now if you’d enable it, macro will run to download Locky using Bartallex, which Dridex also uses in its operations.

So if your system becomes infected, you will not be able to recover your files if you do not have a regular backup or if your data has been infected by the malware.

According to the Palo Alto Networks, they have detected 400,000 sessions in which half of the targets were from the US, while the rest were from Canada and Australia.

[Locky uses its command-and-control infrastructure for performing a memory exchange before file encryption. All encrypted files come with “.locky” extension.

Kevin Beaumont from “Medium” wrote guidance on ways to find out who among the staff in your organization has been infected. He also suggested locking of the infected user’s account as well as shutting down of its network access. Most importantly, you should be rebuilding his computer from scratch.

Source: PC World

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Choosing the best anti-virus software is a daunting task. You will have to deal with a lot of choices that promise the same things. But, is your computer really safe with that software? How do you choose your anti-virus app? Here is Your Guide to Choose the Best Anti-Virus Software:

Assess the protection needs of your computer.

You may ask yourself how much you are using the computer for internet stuff like shopping and internet banking. Do you play a lot of online and social networking games? Are you fond of downloading or streaming files like music and movies? The level of protection depends heavily on how much you use your computer. There are specific protections that the system will need aside from anti-virus software.

Check for certifications from major testing agencies to check the status of the anti- virus software.

This way, you can check for its reputation among industry leaders in the anti-virus market and you will have an idea of how your choice fares against its competitors.

Check for a detection and protection scores.

The anti- virus software should be consistent with having high detection and protection scores for each test that it runs. You can also check from user reviews on forums and blogs that discuss matters about computer protection. It is most likely that they will promote certain brands that are truly remarkable when it comes to performance, affordability, and user-friendly.

Is there any other added protection aside from protection against viruses?

The best anti-virus software is one that has other protective features like anti-spam, pop-up blockers, anti- malware, among others.

Finally test the performance of your chosen anti-virus software.

Usually, you are given to a free trial to evaluate the software first before finally making a purchase. Notice little things like whether it slows down your computer, or do you have any problem running other programs with it. Sometimes you may have the best anti-virus software but it might not be compatible with your operating system.

**It is highly-recommended that you ask first for a trial period so you will not waste money on incompatible software.

Bitdefender… The Best Protection Your PC Could Ever Have.

Figuring out the best anti- virus software is not at all difficult. You really just have to be meticulous in choosing the one that will work best with your computer and that it meets the criteria for the level of protection that you need.  Sure you can have free anti-virus software but more often than not, they are very limited when it comes to features and performance. Paid anti-virus software may not always be expensive.

Check Bit Defender!

It is advanced anti-virus software that is equipped with features that truly gives the best protection for your computer. Aside from its powerful anti-virus capability, it is equipped with anti- spyware, anti- theft, parental control, social network protection, firewall, safe banking, and even ID theft protection.

Doing what you want on the internet need not to be scary or a traumatizing experience. Even if there are reports about credit card frauds due to identity theft in the internet, rest assured that with the Bit Defender installed in your computer, you will be protected.

Aside from its remarkable anti-virus software, it has the best protection against people who may want to get access into your system to get hold of your personal and sensitive information. Choosing the best anti- virus software should make you realize just how important having only the best one for your computer is.

Buy Your Bitdefender today!

Owning a Mac? Get Bitdefender Mac 2013.

Already have a Bitdefender? Upgrade for only $14.95.

Until Next Time,

Peter—Your Bitdefender Guide

The No.1 Security firm, BitDefender have the solution to the removal of Downadup (Conficker) Virus that infected 9 million computers in about three months time.

Conficker is a worm which takes advantage on the vulnerabilities of Windows, where it blocks access to the server of anti-virus websites which stops the user to disinfect his computer from this havoc-wreaking virus. Apart from the disability to access anti-virus sites, Conficker also targets Windows’ security measures like the Windows Auto-Update, Error Reporting, Defender and Security Center.

This has led BitDefender to come up with a resolution to end this e-threat. Their removal tool is available here

More information about: Downadup (Conficker)

Until next time 😉

Peter – Your BitDefender Guide

EDUnet Trojan

I thought some emails I got with a subject line: “RE: RE: Que video uau!………… muito bom!!!” and a link to a video looked suspicious. Especially since I didn’t know the sender.

Example of the EDUnet Trojan:

[EDUnet Trojan Image coming shortly]

BitDefender antivirus analysts have uncovered a spam-sending scheme of Byzantine complexity. The discovery came with the identification of spam e-mails which claim to contain links to videos. When users try to click and see the video, they are instead prompted to download a “media player.”

The media player is in fact Backdoor.Edunet.A, a piece of malware which uses victims’ computers as a channel for sending commands to a series of mail servers. The mail servers, which are used to spread spam, are mostly in the .edu and .mil domains.

The list of servers is retrieved by the trojan from a series of web servers which are either compromised themselves or part of the attackers’ own network. The list of web servers is continuously changing, but that of the targets has, so far, remained constant.

The trojan sends the commands in the hopes of finding an open relay – a mis-configured mail server that allows anyone to send e-mails – basically making it appear that any mail originating from the trojan is actually one that has been sent from the open relay.

BitDefender researchers have determined that, at least currently, none of the servers in the current target list are actually vulnerable.

“It’s not every day that you stumble on the workings of an honest-to-God hacking ring, let alone one that has a predilection for using military and university-run mail servers as spam relays,” declared Sorin Dudea, BitDefender’s head of AV Research. “It would be interesting to identify what, if anything, the institutions that own the targeted servers have in common.”

Secure your computer against trojans

Until next time 😉

Peter – Your BitDefender Guide