The Internet can be a scary place at times. While there is a lot of good that comes from it, it can also be a haven for the less than savoury among us. Malware, scams, and ransomware are all commonplace. The latter in particular means having effective means of ransomware removal.
Of course, knowledge and prevention are tools in their own right. Before you worry about how to get rid of ransomware, it helps to know the five different types and when you might see them. With a little bit of foresight, you can plan ahead and reduce the risk of ransomware happening to you.
- RaaS (Ransomware as a Service)
This is malware that has been hosted by a hacker that handles all aspects of that attack. These are the more “professional” ransomware attacks and are usually done by someone with actual skill when it comes to hacking.
That means not only distributing the ransomware to begin with but collecting payments and restoring access. They may work with others but they don’t necessarily need to. These are the pros of ransomware.
- Crypto Ransomware
Right now, this is one of the most common and well-known ransomware variants. Ransomware removal tools have been created in recent years just to combat this type of ransomware and this type alone.
Basically, this type encrypts the files and all relevant data within a system. That data and those files then become inaccessible to the machine’s owner. That is, unless they have an encryption key. As you may have guessed by now, the person who encrypted the files will demand a certain ransom to have the data unlocked. There is, of course, the potential that they take the money and run without even unlocking the files again.
This can be different depending on the case. Some scareware is simply a fake software that declares to have infected your computer with a virus or implemented some other sort of issue. There are even some that lock the computer.
The point is to flood the computer with messages that scare the user into taking foolish action that may compromise the information on that device. Unlike some forms of ransomware, these typically won’t damage the computer or the files within. But most users aren’t aware of this and react accordingly.
Much like the crypto ransomware, these lock you out of the system entirely. That means not only files but also applications are totally inaccessible to the user. Most of the time, the lock screen will also display a ransom demand of some sort. The really creative ones add in a timer to get their victims to act out of fear and desperation.
This is probably the most widely represented form of ransomware in the media. There is a likelihood that nothing more happens than a failure to restore access but most users are not aware of that. They simply react out of fear.
- Leakware or Doxware
These are becoming more and more commonplace. This type of ransomware threatens to distribute sensitive company or personal information online. The goal is to make the recipient panic and pay the ransom to keep that information from getting into the wrong hands or out into the public domain.
There is even a police-themed ransomware. These claim to be law enforcement, stating that the user is partaking in illegal activity but can avoid issue by paying a fine. If this happens, do not pay the fine as it is not a legitimate law enforcement agency that is sending the message.