GCSD issues warning about ‘ransomware’
The Greene County Sheriff’s Department issued a warning about a virus which holds devices for “ransom.”
GCSD Det. Sgt. Jim O’Malley is investigating a series of complaints regarding “ransomware,” which locks users out of their device unless they pay.
“Ransomware is a type of malware that prevents users from accessing their own cell phone/computer system or personal files and then demands ransom payments in order to regain access,” the press release explains. “These ransomware viruses can be in the form of booby-trapped PDFs or Word documents, malicious advertising pop-ups, unfamiliar emails, ect. Sometimes they are disguised as government documents.”
GCSD suggests taking steps to prevent the issue, such as virus protection.
“Malwarebytes for Windows is one example. Create a secure back up on a regular basis. Use cloud storage that includes high-level encryption or an external hard drive,” the release states.
“Above all, if it seems suspicious, it probably is.”
The department urges individuals not to offer payment or release personal information.