What Are the 4 Main Types of Ransomware, and Why Are They Dangerous?

Woman locked out of digital device because of ransomware

In today’s modern age, new types of ransomware arrive daily. Ransomware works by cutting off access to vital data within a computer system or network. Criminals withhold data until the victim pays a ransom. 

Modern variants work by encrypting files on infected computer systems and restricting access. Targets then have to pay massive amounts to get a decrypt key with no guarantee of data recovery or future attacks. 

What Are The Main Types Of Ransomware?

Ransomware comes in many forms but can be categorized into four main types:

  1. Crypto Ransomware

This common type of ransomware uses encryption to encode and conceal essential data. Most companies operating today use the online arena to conduct business, and cyberattackers are aware of this. Crypto ransomware can block data, files, and networks, making it one of the most dangerous types. 

  1. Locker Ransomware

Locker ransomware goes one step further and completely shuts the victim out of their computer. Then, the attacker requests a ransom to unlock the device. There is no guarantee of ever recovering your data with locker ransomware. 

  1. Phishing Emails

Hackers use phishing emails as a common method of spreading ransomware. These emails are carefully crafted and tailored to the targeted business. They work by enticing the user to click on a malicious link or download. The tricky thing is that the infected files can come in any format, including PDF, ZIP, or even a Word document (DOC). 

  1. Drive-By Downloads

Compromised websites offer an entry path for ransomware to infect your business’s network or computer. These websites download infected files onto a computer without the user’s knowledge.

What Are Ransomware Tactics?

Attackers Download & Install Backdoors 

Ransomware attacks that have access to your network can come and go as they please. They install tools to organize folders and directories, which they then use to accumulate and store stolen information. 

Attackers Steal Corporate Information

Blackmailing organizations and threatening data leaks are common tactics used by ransomware attackers when targeting high-profile businesses. Attackers exploit companies through gaps in their security systems. Many cybercriminals abuse their targets for years, selling business data to third-party criminals at exorbitant prices. 

3 Steps To Protect Your Business From Different Types of Ransomware 

It’s estimated that in 2020, more than $20 billion was paid out to ransomware attackers worldwide. Attacks are now uniquely designed and targeted. Businesses’ digital footprints are researched and surveyed to produce optimum results. 

Follow these three steps to protect your business against ransomware attacks: 

  1. DO NOT Click On Unsafe Links

Avoid any links that are not verified or from trusted sources. Unsafe links can automatically trigger a harmful download and open your computer up to an attack. 

  1. DO NOT Disclose Personal Information

Disclosing personal information is the easiest way for attackers to gain access to your data. Calls, texts, and emails can all be used to trick people into disclosing information that might harm your business. Phishing and email scams work in the same way. When in doubt, directly contact the sender. 

  1. DO NOT Open Suspicious Email Attachments

Pay close attention to who is sending an email before opening any attachments. Infected attachments can trick users into downloading and opening them. If a macro is needed to view an attachment, do not open it. Malicious macros can take control of your computer. 

IT Solutions 

Ransomware comes in many forms. Technology moves so quickly that it’s often hard to keep up with the latest cybersecurity trends. Businesses are now investing in IT solutions to help them stave off expensive cyber attacks. 

The only way to combat ransomware is to stay vigilant and adequately train your staff on the dangers of cyberattacks. Having an up-to-date knowledge base makes all the difference when dealing with the fast-paced world of cybercriminals.