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Protect end users from Ransomware as it reaches a new peak!

By Anna

February 21, 2024

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According to Digital Information World, in 2023, Ransomware hackers made more money than ever before, setting a new record and earning $1.1 billion! Which is a big increase from the $567 million they earned in 2022. In an increasingly interconnected digital landscape, the threat of Ransomware casts a formidable shadow over individuals, businesses, and organizations alike. As technology evolves, so do the methods used by cybercriminals, and Ransomware has emerged as one of the most damaging forms of Malvertising. Keep on reading to find out about the different types of Ransomware violations, how does Ransomware affect end users and how to protect end users from Ransomware.

What exactly is Ransomware and how does it affect end users? 

How can you protect end users from Ransomware as an Ad Network or Publisher? Ransomware is a type of malicious software designed to block access to a computer system or encrypt files until a sum of money, or "ransom," is paid. It's a digital hostage situation, where the victim's data is held captive until they comply with the attacker's demands.

The impact of a Ransomware attack can be devastating. For individuals, it could mean losing precious family photos, personal documents, or financial records. For businesses, it can lead to significant downtime, financial loss, damage to reputation, and even legal consequences. And of course, for both end users and companies the whole ordeal can end in a steep financial loss, having to pay in order to not lose their files and personal or business information.

Stay vigilant of the different types of Ransomware violations

Continuing on we will tell you about the different types of Ransomware violations so that you are better equipped to protect end users from Ransomware:

#1 Locker Ransomware: one of the most common different types of Ransomware violations, Locker Ransomware locks the victim out of their entire system, denying access to files and applications. Payment is typically demanded to restore access. An example of this kind of Ransomware attack is the Winlocker Malware.

Protect end users from Ransomware  How does Ransomware affect end users different types of Ransomware violations prevent Ransomware for Ad Networks prevent Ransomware for Publishers

Source: Trojan.Winlock.7372

#2 Cryptographic Ransomware: Cryptographic Ransomware surpasses Locker Ransomware in prevalence and reach. It encrypts either all or a portion of files on a computer, compelling victims to pay a ransom for a decryption key. Some recent iterations even extend their reach to shared networks and cloud drives. The propagation of cryptographic Ransomware occurs through diverse channels such as malicious emails, website ads, and downloads.

Protect end users from Ransomware  How does Ransomware affect end users different types of Ransomware violations prevent Ransomware for Ad Networks prevent Ransomware for Publishers

Source: A stolen version of DMA Locker is making the rounds

#3 Mobile Ransomware: targeting mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, mobile Ransomware infects mobile operating systems and can lock the device or encrypt files until a ransom is paid. Examples of this Ransomware attack type include Android/Simplelocker and Svpeng.

Protect end users from Ransomware  How does Ransomware affect end users different types of Ransomware violations prevent Ransomware for Ad Networks prevent Ransomware for Publishers

Source: Ransomware Has Gone Mobile

#4 Doxware: also known as Leakware or Extortionware, Doxware threatens to publish sensitive or personal information stolen from the victim's system unless a ransom is paid.

Protect end users from Ransomware  How does Ransomware affect end users different types of Ransomware violations prevent Ransomware for Ad Networks prevent Ransomware for Publishers

Source: Doxware the next step in evolution

#5 RaaS (Ransomware-as-a-Service): The last one of the different types of Ransomware violations, RaaS allows cybercriminals to rent or purchase Ransomware kits, making it easier for less technically skilled individuals to launch Ransomware attacks. The creators typically take a cut of the ransom payments.

These are just a few examples of Ransomware attack types, and the landscape of Ransomware continues to evolve with new variants and techniques emerging regularly. So it is necessary to stay vigilant to protect end users from Ransomware.

How to protect end users from Ransomware 

So, now that you know the different types of Ransomware violations, how can you protect yourself and your digital assets from falling victim to Ransomware? And how does Ransomware affect end users? Here are a few essential steps on how to protect end users from Ransomware:

  1. Keep Your Software Updated: Keep your operating system, antivirus, and other software updated to patch vulnerabilities cybercriminals could exploit.
  2. Backup Your Data: Regularly backup important files to external drives, cloud storage, or reputable backup services. This ensures data restoration without paying ransom in case of an attack.
  3. Exercise Caution Online: Be wary of suspicious emails, links, and attachments, as they may contain Ransomware or other malware. Avoid clicking on unknown links or downloading files from untrusted sources.
  4. Use Strong Passwords: Use complex, unique passwords for accounts and enable multi-factor authentication when possible for added security.
  5. Educate Yourself and Your Team: Stay informed about the latest Ransomware threats and educate yourself, your family, and your friends on cybersecurity best practices.
  6. Implement Security Measures: Invest in advanced cybersecurity solutions like firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and endpoint security software to detect and prevent Ransomware attacks.

How to prevent Ransomware as an Ad Network or a Publisher

So, how to prevent Ransomware for Publishers and Ad Networks? And how to protect end users from Ransomware? As Publishers or Ad Networks, it's crucial to consistently monitor the content of advertisements displayed on your website or present in your platform’s ad supply chains for indications of malicious activity. Employ a combination of automated tools such as AdSecure and manual Compliance review processes to identify and eliminate ads that could harbor Ransomware or other Malware. Stay alert for Malvertising red flags, including unexpected redirects or suspicious behavior.

Remember, Ransomware attacks can happen to anyone, but by taking proactive steps to protect end users from Ransomware if you are a Publisher or an Ad Network, you can significantly reduce the risk of falling victim to this pervasive threat and prevent end users from being affected. Stay vigilant, stay informed, and contribute to promoting a safe and pleasant digital world. 

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