The security of our personal data is becoming more important in this data driven world. It’s not unheard of for major security and cyber hacks where people’s personal data is stolen, or just simply their technology is ‘taken over’.
The number of data and technology attacks are on the rise; while some attacks stick to personal computers, others target large organisations. After a major recent event, I want to have a look at ‘ransomware’ and what we can do to protect ourselves.
One of the most recent events was the ransomware attack on over 300,000 computers across the world, mostly affecting the NHS in the UK. This ransomware attack known as ‘WannaCry’ locked all the files in the computer and, like all ransomware attacks, the hackers demanded payment in bitcoin for the files and documents to be released.
Ransomware like this isn’t always the be all and end all, and a majority of the time a ‘weakness’ can be found to remove the virus. In the end with the WannaCry attack, coder Marcus Hutchins, found the ‘kill switch’ and he was able to shut it down.
Ransomware attacks like WannaCry can be avoided and this ransomware attack showed how important it is to keep your operating system, application patches and anti-virus software up to date.
While this large-scale attack mostly affected large businesses across the world they can also be targeted at personal computers. If your computer is kept up-to-date the probability of an attack like this happening to you can be lowered.
It can also be a good idea to back up all important documents and files so they can be accessed on another device, as it was seen with this attack it wiped out a LOT of the NHS computers, meaning important information was lost and the staff were having to revert to the old school pen and paper notes.
This event, and others like it, show how important it is to keep our data safe. While more data is being collected and our lives becoming more connected the threat of ransomware and hacking attacks is only going to rise. I’m interested to see how far security can go and what measures we will be taking in the future.
Are you concerned about the security of your data? What measures do you take to protect yourself? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
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This blog was originally published on LinkedIn. To read the original article click here.