Increased internet dependency across the world has led to the rise in malware infections. This is attributable to two things: weaker controls on home networks and a higher tendency of people clicking on Coronavirus-themed ransomware allure emails due to the high levels of anxiety.
Some of the current ransomware lures include:
- Financial scams offering financial payments by governments during the economic shutdown
- Information about masks, vaccines, and the supply of commodities such as hand sanitizers
- Free downloads for in-demand technology solutions such as contacting tracing apps, and audio and video conferencing platforms
Types of malware
Malware appears in different varieties, each with its own attack vector. As a device user, you must know how to recognize the various types of malware to be able to protect yourself from malware attacks. Let’s look at some of the malware kinds that you should be aware of.
A ransomware attack restricts or denies access to your data, and demands payment before letting you in. The payment asked is always in the form of crypto-currencies.
The criminals will often intimidate the victim by threatening to publish or erase the data if no ransom is paid. Ransomware is mostly spread through phishing.
Viruses typically attach themselves to a word document or executable file. This kind of malware is usually spread via email attachment downloads, file sharing, or infected websites. A virus will remain dormant until the compromised host program or file is activated. Once activated, the virus can now replicate and spread throughout your system.
Like the name suggests, Trojan horses are venomous programs that camouflage as legitimate files. Since they look trustworthy, users end up downloading them, and that’s how you welcome the enemy into your system.
Once you have downloaded a Trojan on your system, cybercriminals can use it to:
- Spy on your device
- Capture, modify and delete data
- Infiltrate your network
Ways to Increase Protection Against Malware
Dealing with a malware attack can be a nightmare. But, there are things you can do to ensure you don’t get infected with it in the first place. Let’s look at some of them.
Use Anti-ransomware, Anti-malware, Firewall, and Anti-exploit Software
Your firewall, anti-malware, and anti-ransomware can help detect and bar some of the known threat actors. By using multiple layers of protection, you can block sophisticated attacks from unspecified agents, hence stopping malware infection in real-time.
Use a VPN
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) plays an important role in cybersecurity. By downloading a VPN for extra protection, you’ll be able to protect your network from malicious threat actors, especially when using unsecured public Wi-Fi. You will, therefore, be protected from malware lurking on public Wi-Fi networks.
Cybersecurity is now more important than ever as the risk of malware has heightened due to the switch to remote working and cybercriminals taking advantage of the increased anxiety to launch attacks. As a business or individual, it is important to take the necessary steps to ensure that you remain protected and do not fall victim to a malware attack.