Websites and Warnings

Eastbourne Downlands Computer Club

Stop Hacker Ransomware attacks!

We have all heard about the attack on NHS hospitals and doctors, disabling their computers, delaying medical treatment and risking lives. This attack also demanded a huge ransom to restore their systems and medical records - money that our stretched NHS just does not have.

Well, it could happen to you! There are now bound to be many copycat attacks - not just on NHS computers - but on all computers where criminals can hope to extract money. Yours included!

So how can you determine whether you are at risk? Guard against attacks? Restore your system and files if you do get infected? Take these steps to avoid infection

1.       Check whether your computer is at high risk. Apple PCs are not affected, but Microsoft Windows PCs are.

a.       How do I know what Microsoft system I am using? Click SYSTEM to find out

b.      If you have Windows XP, DO NOT use it for emails. It is usually but not always an email link that carries the ransomware virus and XP is now very vulnerable to attack.

2.       Check whether you have the latest updates installed for Windows 7, Windows Vista or Windows10

a.       Click WINDOWS and follow the instructions

3.       Use a powerful and up-to-date anti-virus program. The ones that the Club recommends are Kaspersky and Avast.

a.       Kaspersky 2017 scores top in antivirus ratings (see Compare). Retail price is £34.99, but get it via Computer Club for only £19.95 or even less- click Kaspersky

b.      Avast is best FREE antivirus. It may be free, but it is incredibly powerful - See Review. To get it, click FREE

4.       Beware of opening email links or attachments. There are many fake emails now coming from apparently safe sources, such as Post Office, BT, Tax Office, Credit Card company, Bank, Gas and Electricity suppliers, that are FAKE! "Special Offers", "Your refund" and "You have won" are often scams. Click the link there and you will be infected . . .  So before replying or opening any link or attachment:

a.       Check the email's source even if it is a friend. (Contact lists are regularly hacked.) If it is at all suspicious (like accounts@barclaycard.usa) DO NOT OPEN IT. Check back with the supplier to confirm if it is genuine. If in doubt, delete it.

b.      Scan the attachment or link with your anti-virus.

c.       Report fake (phishing) emails via your supplier's website

5.       If you are unfortunate and do get infected, do not immediately send any Bitcoin ransom to the hacker criminals to unlock your files.

a.       The hackers may do nothing! The whole scare may even be bogus. And once you have paid, the payment can never be traced or refunded.

b.      Try a ransomware removal tool Click RANSOM to find out more.

      Other sites are Test, TopTen, TechRadar and Avast

6.       Be a member of the Computer Club and get

a.       Full access to the Club website

b.      News and warnings of major scams and virus attacks before they happen to you

c.       Click JOIN to get  membership for you and your family