In this episode of The Tech Ranch, “Guru of Geek” Marlo Anderson and “Tech Geezer” Jim Walsh talk about the Wannacry Ransomware cyber attack that has been occurring the past few days. Later in the show, Candice and Marc Perea, founders of Aerez, stop by the studio to talk about an amazing software app that will help you protect your children from the harmful side of the Internet.
The “Guru of Geek” and “Tech Geezer” spend a significant amount of time discussing the latest ransomware that has infiltrated thousands of people across the world this past weekend. Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts a user’s data, then demands payment in exchange for unlocking the data. The Wannacry Ransomware was an attack that used malicious software to exploit a vulnerability found in Windows. A patch was released by Windows this past March, but computers that did not install the security update were made vulnerable. Consequently, over 200,000 government offices and major companies in at least 150 countries were among those attacked by the ransomware. The best way to prevent your computer from becoming infected with any virus is to follow these simple steps:
- Make sure all security updates on your computer are current and up-to-date. There are two types of updates that normally run with a computer–Critical and Optional. All Critical updates should be current. These types of updates are security updates from Windows that help ensure your computer is safe and running smoothly.
- Install a reliable virus protection program in your computer. Sadly, too many people use free anti-virus programs on their computers thinking this will protect them. However, keep in mind that free anti-virus software does not provide the maximum protection. Your best bet is to purchase an anti-virus to receive full benefits of protection for your computer.
- Avoid clicking on pop-ups on your monitor or screen. Often, these pop-ups contain viruses that open up and infect your computer once you click on the pop-up. Pop-ups are also a good indication that your computer is already infected.
- Avoid opening e-mail that looks suspicious. Rule of thumb is if you don’t know the person or sender, delete, delete, delete. However, occasionally, a known sender can send a virus to your computer without realizing they’ve done so. Use discretion always.
- Never give remote access to your computer to anyone. Calling 1-800 numbers that pop up on your screen is a definite no. Many people fall victim to his scam. Also, as a reminder, Microsoft will never call you. If you receive a call saying your computer is infected, simply say you don’t have a computer and hang up.
- Back your data up to an external hard-drive (or two). Some people back data up on their computer. However, this will be useless of your computer is infected with ransomware. An external hard-drive source will at least save your data in a safe location. A PC can be fixed, but photos and documents can be priceless. Back your data up!
Join the “Guru of Geek” Marlo Anderson, “Tech Geezer” Jim Walsh and “Miss Metaverse” Katie Aquino every week for a new episode of the Tech Ranch.
Broadcast Date May 15, 2017 Episode 272