GOLDEN EYE RANSOMWARE ATTACK

wannacryIn the recent past, a ransomware known as WannaCry was detected  by ESET as Win32/Filecoder.WannaCryptor.D . WannaCry also was known as WannaCrypt or Wanna Decryptor has had effects on PCs all over the world. It estimated that the ransomware had affected over 50 countries since May of this year. However an what is termed as an advanced version of Wannacry was detected a few days ago by  ESET as Win32/Diskcoder.C Trojan. The ransomware is called Petya or The Golden Eye

 

goldenThe Petya malware attacks a computer’s MBR (master boot record), a key part of the startup system. If the malware successfully infects the MBR, (master boot record), it will encrypt the whole drive itself. The computer user then receives a message that the files have been encrypted, with a demand that a ransom be paid to release them.

 

 

induThe ransomware targets from industries to financial institutions, individual users, healthcare and governmental agencies. These not only resulted in the valuable loss of sensitive data but also abrupt crippling of businesses. Hence, users need to take utmost precaution to find all possible vulnerabilities in their network and use patch updates to safeguard any probable exploit.

ESET has however made this a story not to worry about anymore. With the Ransomware Shield, Network Attack Protection, and Cloud Malware Protection Systems, ESET ensures that there is use multilayered malware prevention and detection to keep criminals from holding your data hostage. It also prevents spread of ransomware by protecting against vulnerabilities for which a patch has not yet been released or deployed and analyzes submitted malware and provides results to endpoints without requiring an update.

protect                                                                   How to protect yourself with  ESET from Petya

ESET, Proven, Trusted and Tested.

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HOW LEGIT IS YOUR ANTIVIRUS AND HOW SAFE ARE YOU?

mejores_antivirus_gratuitos_2016_0Antivirus software has long been a part of computer security. Its use predates the Internet as it is known today because viruses originally were circulated from computer to computer through the sharing of floppy discs. Having antivirus software is still an important way to help protect a home computer from attacks, but how legit is your antivirus?

Even the most naïve computer user know how computer viruses can destroy ones work in a matter of seconds, hour or even days. The self-replicating programs can wreak havoc in every compute it affects in some cases causing international crisis rumored even to happen. But how well do you understand forms of interchanging viruses and malware and how they work?

It is this inexperienced nature of individuals that cyber-criminals get a larger base of targets to attack and exploit, with the fastest growing attack method: use of fake antivirus software. With this, cyber-criminals can bypass even the most fortified computer protection since the users will invite the malware onto their computers even without knowing.

7283762-it-s-a-fake-stampFake antivirus software is any program that claims to be legit and beneficial, designed to counter malware attack. Instead, the software itself is the malware and therefore causes harm to the computer. Fake antivirus software can do harm in the following ways:

  1. The program does nothing or does a poor job, leaving a computer unprotected and a person paying for nothing.
  2. The program disables real antivirus software programs or prevents itself from being removed by real antivirus programs
  3. The program contains or really is malware itself, causing harm to the computer instead of helping it.

Cyber-criminals who create the fake software play on people’s ignorance about computers. This has made the forms of attacks to evolve from physical breaking-in into computers to the uses of infected bait this is known as social engineering.

computer-infectedHave you ever come across a website that has a flashing advertisement that reads, “Your computer is infected with a virus! Click here to download a certain antivirus?” or a message that reads your android version has expired click to upgrade and your phone starts to vibrate as if it wants to blow up? A knowledgeable computer user knows that an advertisement cannot run a virus scan.

fakeAnother trick that cyber-criminals use is to name their software and use it in the name of a legit and respected product. For example Antivirus 360 instead of Norton 360, and many end up thinking they are receiving the quality product.

The term social engineering usually refers to a digital scam in which the perpetrator ends up with some financial gain. Although part of the trick may result in a damaged computer or software, the main goal is to make money off an attack. This can be achieved by collecting payment for a product that doesn’t exist, or by collecting the credit card information of the targets during the payment process and even stealing information and demanding ransomware.

fakeHaving all this in mind, stopping fake antivirus is quite easy:

  1. Becoming educated on the forms and nature of malwares and how they work.
  2. Not trusting emails from unidentified sources
  3. Determining how a website may be unsafe

 

Having accredited antivirus software installed in an individual’s devices is the safest solution. Most legit antivirus products require a certain period of subscription such as ESET products. As mentioned earlier, some fake antivirus software disrupt the legit antivirus weakening the security and therefore prone to attacks. ESET on the other hand warns its users of harmful website and those that are phishing and look like real websites but are indeed fake. Also, ESET warns of harmful files that are to be downloaded.

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ONLINE BANKING WITH BYOD SYSTEM

online-banking-trojan-esetPresently, cybersecurity or (insecurity) in Kenya is the single biggest threat to business in terms of the consumption and use of Information Communication Technologies (ICT).

Over the recent months we have seen a rise in cases of cyber-attacks such as ransomware and data leakage, some which have even gone undetected. One such incident that went viral on regional social media circles involved a leading Kenyan bank. A hacker was supposedly able to access through a data systems breach, more than 500,000 customers’ details, including names and phone numbers and which were then plastered on various online platforms.

Unfortunately, innovation has meant that hacking tools are now cheaper and simpler to use in marking out vulnerable targets. Serianu Limited, the publishers of the Kenya Cyber security report, notes that Kenyan companies lost over Sh15 billion in 2015 through Cybercrime. On top of this pile of victim losses sits in the public sector at Sh5 billion followed by the financial services sector at Sh4 billion. Sadly, this scenario is not unique to Kenya, cybercrime has been on a steady rise globally.

Another study by consulting house PwC, notes that the number of cyber security incidents across all industries grew by 38 percent in 2015 and which is the biggest increase in the 12 years since the global study was first published.

No doubt the mobile phone is the universal communication device of choice for many. The Communications Authority of Kenya notes that we have 39 million mobile phone subscribers in Kenya, 22 million who access and are constantly on the internet.

A huge proportion of this fraction estimated at about 95 percent doesn’t have mobile security in place. This could very well mean that the smart phone is the single largest cybersecurity weakness we have today.

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With the advent of the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) culture this could be true for both the individual and corporate users. This is a huge vulnerability gap considering that online and mobile transactions have become the most convenient ways of banking in Kenya through USSD short codes and Mobile banking apps.

 

 

Whereas banks may have invested heavily in ICT security systems, most Kenyans remain grossly unaware of the various cyber security threats that exist. Some of these include, key logging, Man-in-the-middle, Phishing and even ransomware attacks.

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So how can you the consumer of online banking services ensure that you are not a vulnerable and easy target for hackers?

Teddy Njoroge, Country Manager for ICT security solutions company, ESET East Africa, says the first step would be for ICT professionals to obtain latest training on the prevalent risks in the market. Consumers, he adds would do much better for themselves by being proactive about their online security by keeping up with common cyber security threat solutions.

“These could be specific to the type of devices or platforms on which you access your online banking services. However, the important thing is to be aware of the potential risks and how to mitigate these in real-time, since it is very possible to detect unwanted intrusions such as phishing and ransomware scams”, says Njoroge.

tipsSafer Online Banking principles

According to Njoroge, some key principles of safer online banking and payments to consider include using trust worthy devices and internet connections, while keeping the operating systems and software up-to-date. Not every internet connection such as public WI-Fi at the coffee shop or a random network at any office is secure to be used for online banking or making payments. It is advisable instead to use a virtual private network (VPN) to keep your communications encrypted (unreadable) to anyone who may try to intercept them.

“Whenever you connect to your online account, use your own computer, tablet or Smartphone as it is more likely to notice if any suspicious activity is going. Avoid using a borrowed or public device that might put your data, account or savings at risk”, says Njoroge.

But having a strong password is perhaps the first step in proactively securing your device and online banking access. One easy technique in developing a strong but simple password regime is ‘pass phrasing’ which simply means using a sequence of words or other text to control access to a computer system, program or data. However, it is doubly important never to reuse your password e.g. for your bank, social media and other accounts which can mean a total hack into each account in case it leaks from any one of them. To manage these, one can use a password manager that will store all of them and allow you to remember just one master password.

ESET Smart Security PremiumSimilarly, to enjoy the internet and maximize protection while connecting to an online banking account, one should install a trusted security solution on their devices. This will preferably be a reliable, multilayered and updated security solution. For example, ESET Smart Security offers protection from multiple types of malware as well as malicious tricks that might be disguised as harmless emails or websites. Cyber criminals will try anything to access your sensitive data. They will pretend to be your banker, pose as an innocuous notification in your email, or ask you to change the password via a link added to that email you just received. If you get any message asking you to change your banking credentials or click on a link, contact your bank and verify this immediately.

“If your bank offers two factor authentication (2FA) for your online account, use it. This way the bank can double check if it is you connecting or making a transaction by using something only you have – such as your personal Smartphone”, advises Njoroge.

For those who check their online banking account less frequently, it is advisable to set up alerts and notifications to your phone. Having information about all the current transactions makes it easier to recognize any suspicious activity. When not using your online banking platform, ensure to log out every time to avoid ‘man in the middle’ type of attacks.

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