If only malware authors used their creativity for the good of this world…
Some extremely enterprising individuals have come up with another interesting ransomware the likes of which have not been seen until now. And it literally tests how humane are you.
We are taking about the Popcorn Time ransomware that was recently discovered by a group called ‘malwarehunterteam’.
What does the ransomware do?
Like its cousins, the Popcorn Time ransomware scans its host (your infected computer) for multiple extensions and encrypts them. As of the latest update on Bleeping Computer, the ransomware targets files saved in the My Documents, My Pictures, My Music, and the desktop folders on the infected machine.
But, what makes this ransomware different from others?
The Popcorn Time is different in the way it asks the ransom to let go of the victim’s files. It offers two choices:
1. The standard method – pay the ransom to get the decryption key for your files.
2. The sneakier method – infect two users with the same ransomware and you get your files back.
More explanation on method 2
According to the ransom note, if you don’t want to pay the ransom to the Popcorn Time malware, then you can send any two people a malicious link which will download the ransomware onto their computers. And if they pay the ransom, then you will receive a free key to decrypt your own files.
How nasty is that?
A strong word of caution!
• First, never pay ransom to cybercriminals. It won’t help; it doesn’t help. Read these 5 compelling reasons not to pay ransom to hackers.
• Secondly, spreading a malware to other users is a criminal act and only risks a prison sentence. Above all, doing so only erases the difference between you and those who make a living by extorting innocent people.
So, here are a few tips, following which is far easier than thinking about what to do once your files are encrypted by a ransomware
• Invest in a layered security software. By layered, we multiple barriers that stop attackers at every step.
• Backing up your files regularly may seem like a boring chore to do, but it is like that emergency flashlight that comes in handy during sudden power outages at your home.
• Do not click on links or download attachments that arrive with emails from unknown, unwanted or unexpected sources.
• Think before you click on social media posts that claim to show you weird, strange or unbelievable videos. Hackers use such baits to trick people into clicking on malicious links.
Alert your friends and peers about the Popcorn Time ransomware and help they stay safe by sharing this post. Stay safe!