In The News Again – Crypto Virus – Update (how to protect yourself!)

In The News Again – Crypto Virus – Update (how to protect yourself!)

Back in December last year we looked at a new virus called Crypto Locker. This virus is classed as ‘ransomware’ and not only locks you out of your computer, demanding money to let you access again, but also encrypts all of your important data so even asking/paying a computer tech to clear the virus won’t give you your data back! This virus, along with another called GOZeuS have been in the news recently.

This is ‘yet’ another reason (if you should need one) to ensure that you back up your data, because if you don’t have your data backed up then the only way to get it back if you have been infected is to hand over money to the people behind the virus (not something I would recommend doing as they are clearly not the most reputable of folk!) You see, the problem is not the virus, which is quite simple to remove, the issue is that the virus encrypts all of your important files and so removing the virus won’t de-crypt the files!

So, what can you do to ‘harden’ the security on your computer? Well, this process will help prevent your computer from becoming infected, of course, it doesn’t mean that you should ignore my advice to do a backup.

In order to increase the security on your computer you will need to make some changes to your computer set up (don’t worry it’s not that hard) to stop program’s from being able to run (or execute as we call it) from certain vulnerable folders or directories. In doing this you make your computer much more secure, however as a result you may experience problems running some software, but to be honest, better to have a few software issues than have all of your data lost, eh?

Ok, what you need to do is as follows…

1. Download either “CryptoPrevent” or “CryptoPrevent Premium” from the website, using the link below, the difference between the standard version and the premium version (you will be asked which one you want to install as part of the install process) is that the premium version costs $15 and includes protection for all of the computers in your home and all updates for free for life – not bad for just $15!

2. Once downloaded you should run the file and follow the on screen prompts to install it.

3. Next you should click on the ‘apply’ button and a few things will flash up on the screen. It takes a few minutes to install so be patient and eventually you will be asked to restart your computer.

4. Once you have restarted your computer we need to check that everything has been installed correctly. You can do this by clicking on Programs > Foolish IT > Crypto Prevent > Crypto Prevent or by clicking start and just typing “Crypto” and you should be presented with the relevant program if you are using Windows 7 or 8.

5. This time you should click on the “Test” button and if you have installed everything correctly.

6. That’s it! You have successfully increased the protection of your computer, congratulations!

Don’t forget that you still need to take all the appropriate precautions i.e. ensure your Antivirus is up to date, ensure you have a good backup of your data and be careful about what you open both on the Internet and via your email.