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93% Of Phishing Emails Are Now Ransomware (csoonline.com) 79

According to the latest data from security firm PhishMe, 93% of all phishing emails as of the end of March contained encryption ransomware. The numbers underscore a growing trend in the security space as ransomware instances in phishing emails grew up by 56% since December last year. From a report: The anti-phishing vendor also counted the number of different variants of phishing emails that it saw. Ransomware accounted for 51 percent of all variants in March, up from just 29 percent in February and 15 percent in January. The skyrocketing growth is due to that fact that ransomware is getting easier and easier to send and that it offers a quick and easy return on investment. Other types of cyberattacks typically take more work to monetize. Stolen credit card numbers have to be sold and used before the cards are canceled, for example. Identity theft takes even more of a time commitment.
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93% Of Phishing Emails Are Now Ransomware

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  • by JoeyRox ( 2711699 ) on Thursday June 02, 2016 @10:23AM (#52232513)
    Just click on the following embedded link:

    ...
  • by Thanshin ( 1188877 ) on Thursday June 02, 2016 @10:34AM (#52232587)

    I'm scared of my mother calling me one day telling me "I've lost every picture from all my life and a guy is asking me $10K to recover them".

    By that point it will be late to tell her "shouldn't have been storing them in a disk permanently attached to your windows laptop".

    But I don't know how to stop her. I won't convince her to use linux. I won't manage to teach her not to execute random crap once per year.

    Should I trust hard drives to store data for decades?

    • by heypete ( 60671 )

      Have good, versioned backups. I like CrashPlan, as one can use it to backup to various destinations, including local systems/disks, remote systems associated with one's account, remote systems belonging to others (so long as they give permission), and for paid users, to the CrashPlan-run storage service.

      All backups are encrypted so that the destinations cannot access one's data, it keeps regular versions so one can easily recover from a ransomware (or other) infection that corrupts or destroys files slowly

    • by Jeremi ( 14640 )

      Our suggestion is that they make backups of their valuable data... and since that may not be something they are confident/knowledgable enough to do on their own, if you want to make sure it gets done, you may need to set it up (and occasionally check up on it) yourself.

      On Mac, setting up a Time Machine backup drive is pretty trivial to do. For Windows, similar solutions exist. For a laptop, there are solutions that back up data via WiFi, if plugging in an external drive is too much bother. In either case

      • And the backup needs to be done in a way that guarantees profilaxis from the ransomware.

        I think from now on, when visiting parents and sisters I'll bring a usb bootable linux and a hard drive that I'll take back with me.

        I predict much debate over what's "Important to keep".

        • by Jeremi ( 14640 )

          I predict much debate over what's "Important to keep".

          I find that debate can be avoided by spending the extra $20 to get the Absurdly Huge External Drive (rather than just the Impressively Huge model). Then you can just back up everything and call it a day.

    • by wbr1 ( 2538558 ) on Thursday June 02, 2016 @10:51AM (#52232755)
      VERSIONED BACKUPS! VERSIONED BACKUPS! VERSIONED BACKUPS! Automated, off-site, and with rollback. Hell, carbonite can do this for her.
    • For some people education works. My father called me when "Windows" (not Microsoft) called him telling him he had errors on his system and they wanted to remote in to fix them. I informed him of the scam and he avoided being hooked. (Now he harasses the scammers calling him.)

      For others, education doesn't work. My wife's grandmother still clicks on suspicious links in Facebook because "Well, it was on my friend's wall and said I'd get this free stuff so it must be good, right?" This despite a dozen "No

    • by stealth_finger ( 1809752 ) on Thursday June 02, 2016 @10:58AM (#52232829)

      I'm scared of my mother calling me one day telling me "I've lost every picture from all my life and a guy is asking me $10K to recover them".

      By that point it will be late to tell her "shouldn't have been storing them in a disk permanently attached to your windows laptop".

      But I don't know how to stop her. I won't convince her to use linux. I won't manage to teach her not to execute random crap once per year.

      Should I trust hard drives to store data for decades?

      Just go ahead and delete it all now, that way no harm can come to the files.

    • Tell her now, with current news articles in hand, that this is the risk you run by using Windows. If she won't listen and move to Linux, then too bad: she was warned.

    • by johnw ( 3725 )

      I had the same problem with my father.

      What I did was to arrange for all his files to be rsynced daily to one of my servers, which in its turn was backed up nightly.

      We had a couple of instances of him accidentally deleting stuff and I was able to restore it for him easily. Happily he never got hit with any malicious software - not after I weaned him of Windows anyway.

    • by dougmc ( 70836 )

      I'm scared of my mother calling me one day telling me "I've lost every picture from all my life and a guy is asking me $10K to recover them".

      Yup, this is a real, justified fear.

      It's wise to not attempt to switch her to Linux -- she'd probably fight that (it's too different for most people without any real benefits for what they do), and it's not really a solution to the problem anyways.

      Probably the best answer to this is to buy her a big USB hard drive and set up some sort of backup that she can run just by clicking on something, and drill into her head how important it is to 1) do the backup occasionally. and 2) leave the drive off when you're

    • by imidan ( 559239 )

      Apparently many of these malwares also encrypt data on attached volumes like Windows shares and the like. It seems to me that the best approach is a 'pull' solution, where Mom keeps her photos in a place that's shared on her network, and then another machine does periodic backups of that share. Mom's computer doesn't have write access to the pulling machine, in fact doesn't even know or care that it's there. So the backups are safe.

      That means having a linux machine in the house to do the pulling. Build

  • I'm guessing that of that 93% you only have to worry if you're on Windows.
    • Yes, but only because people use predominantly Windows. If they used Linux, we'd probably get to see a lot of phishing mails that hope for people who run shell scripts that look like PDF files...

  • Are you honestly complaining that they noticed that nobody falls for 419 scams and penis enlargement anymore and instead of wanting a government bailout to prop up their failed business they went to a more profitable venue?

    What is wrong with you, are you commies or what?

  • Imagine an external drive connected to the laptop/PC via USB (Thunderbolt, etc). Minimum double bay set at RAID-1. Owner can read and write to the drive. Attempts to delete or modify files or folders on the drive will fail though. A physical, hardware lock needs to be "turned" to enable that capability.

    This would prevent ransomware (of that drive's data anyways). It would also help prevent accidental deletes of files.

    Does such a unicorn exist? I'm not looking for some half-baked alternative.

    • by Mr.CRC ( 2330444 )

      The answer is called "archives." It's different from backups. I'm working on a script to use xorriso to write only my changed files to BD-R[E], after an initial full write of all my important data (self-created data, financial records, important email dirs, all amounting to only 4-5 GB).

      I can even run this several times per hour when doing high value work, such as electronics design/embedded software engineering. The overhead is small, a few MB per session, just to write out a few changed files and a ne

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