Monday, December 12, 2016

In 2016, ransomware continued its rampage across the world, tightening its hold on data and devices, and on individuals and businesses.

The numbers speak for themselves:
  • 62 new ransomware families made their appearance.
  • There was an 11-fold increase in the number of ransomware modifications: from 2,900 new modifications in January/March, to 32,091 in July/September.
  • Attacks on business increased three-fold between January and the end of September: the difference between an attack every 2 minutes and one every 40 seconds.
  • For individuals the rate of increase went from every 20 seconds to every 10 seconds.
  • One in five small and medium-sized business who paid the ransom never got their data back. (Kaspersky Security)

A recent survey of 500 businesses revealed that nearly half were brought to a standstill by a ransomware attack within the last 12 months. Ransomware is malware that installs covertly on a victim's computer, executes a crypto-virology attack that adversely affects it, and demands a ransom payment to decrypt it or to not publish it.

During the third quarter of the year, there were 32,091 new ransomware variations detected by Kaspersky Lab compared to only 2,900 during the first quarter. Overall, 62 new ransomware families appeared this year, the company said. 

Kaspersky's research revealed that small and medium-size businesses were hit the hardest, 42 percent of them falling victim to a ransomware attack over the past 12 months. Of those, one in three paid the ransom, but one in five never got their files back, despite paying. 

Overall, 67 percent of companies affected by ransomware lost part or all of their corporate data and one in four victims spent several weeks trying to restore access, the Kaspersky researchers said

Ransomware attacks have become more targeted, attackers crafting their spear-phishing and social engineering attacks for specific organizations or industry segments that are more likely to be affected by a lack of data availability. 

According to Kaspersky, one in five incidents that resulted in significant data loss were caused by employee carelessness or lack of security awareness. 

Some when they infect the PC spreads to servers and backup drives as well.

Companies should back up data regularly and switch out drives on a regular schedule.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

If you see a new image or graphic file on your computer that you don’t recall downloading, do not open it. The Locky ransomware program has moved on from MS Office Word to Facebook and LinkedIn vulnerabilities, and is now putting files on your computer that can lock you out of your data.

The attackers have built a new capability to embed malicious code into an image file and successfully upload it to the social media website.

Usually what happens is that when you click on an image thumbnail, rather than displaying the image in a separate window, the file automatically downloads. It would be natural for most people to then click on the downloaded image — and that’s what executes the Locky code and immediately locks up all your files and demands ransom.

The bottom line on avoiding this particular type of an attack by Locky is, if you click on an image and it starts to download, whatever you do, do not open the image file on your computer.
Current ransom to unlock a user’s computer is about $360.00.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

How to send large files

Below are some options on how to send large files when they are to big to email.
2gig free.  $12.00 a month for up to 20GB files

With MyAirBridge, you can upload a file and email its link to a specific recipient or just upload the file and generate a link you can share with anyone. You can send a file as large as 20GB for free. A basic $2.19-per-month plan covers files up to 50GB, the $10.99-per-month Pro plan handles files as hefty as 70GB, and the $65.99-per-month Enterprise plan allows files as beefy as 100GB

Filemail is quick and simple. Fill out an email form with your address and that of your recipient, compose your message, attach your file or files, and send your message. Your recipient then receives a link to the file for downloading or viewing it online. Filemail also offers apps for the desktop, iPhones, iPads and Android devices. The free plan allows files as large as 30GB, while the $9-per-month Filemail Pro plan supports unlimited file sizes.

With Dropsend, you compose an email to your recipient and attach the file you want to send. Your recipient receives an email with a link to the file to view it or download it. Dropsend offers three plans. The free one lets you send files as large as 4GB up to five times a month. For $5 a month, you can send files as large as 8GB up to 15 times a month. And for $9 a month, you can send files up to 8GB in size up to 45 times a month.

Shelby, NC

Friday, September 9, 2016

How to change the export resolution of a PowerPoint slide

Important Follow the steps in this section carefully. Serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Before you modify it, back up the registry for restoration in case problems occur.

By default, the export resolution of a PowerPoint slide that you want to save as a picture is 96 dots per inch (dpi). To change the export resolution, follow these steps:
1.    Exit all Windows-based programs.

2.    Click Start, and then click Run.

3.    In the Open box, type regedit, and then click OK.

4.    Locate one of the following registry subkeys, depending on the version of PowerPoint that you're using:

PowerPoint 2013
PowerPoint 2010
PowerPoint 2007
PowerPoint 2003

5.    Click the Options subkey, point to New on the Edit menu, and then click DWORD Value.

6.    Type ExportBitmapResolution, and then press Enter.

7.    Make sure that ExportBitmapResolution is selected, and then click Modify on the Edit menu.

8.    In the Edit DWORD Value dialog box, click Decimal.

9.    In the Value data box, type the value of the resolution that you want such as 300. Or, use the parameters in the following table.

10  Click OK.

11  On the File menu, click Exit to exit Registry Editor.

Step 2: Export the slide as a picture
1.    In PowerPoint, open your slide presentation, and then open the slide that you want to export.
2.    On the File menu, click Save As.
3.    In the Save as type box, select one of the following picture formats:
o    GIF Graphics Interchange Format (.gif)
o    JPEG File Interchange Format (*.jpg)
o    PNG Portable Network Graphics Format (*.png)
o    TIFF Tag Image File Format (*.tif)
o    Device Independent Bitmap (*.bmp)
o    Windows Metafile (*.wmf)
o    Enhanced Windows Metafile (*.emf)

Note You may want to change the picture's save location in the Save in box. You may also want to change the name of the picture in the File name box.

4.    Click Save. You are prompted with the following dialog box:

Click Current Slide Only. The slide is saved in the new format and resolution, in the location that you specified in the Save in box.

5.    To verify that the slide is saved in the resolution that you specified, right-click the picture, and then click Properties.

When you set the ExportBitmapResolution registry value in PowerPoint, there's a limitation to consider. The maximum resolution that PowerPoint can export is 3072 pixels, based on the longest edge of the slide.

Monday, June 20, 2016

When Microsoft  launched Windows 10 operating system with some integrated features and one such built-in feature of Windows 10 is ‘Keylogger.
Keylogger is a unique feature that can track every single word you speak or type.

How to Disable/Turn Off Keylogger on Windows 10

Initially, go to Start Menu. Open Settings.
Now, click on Privacy option in the Settings, which is located at the bottom of the screen.

Once you are in the Privacy menu, go to the ‘General’ section.
 Once you are in the Privacy menu, go to the ‘General’ section."Send Microsoft info about how I write to help us improve typing and writing in the future option", 
just Turn it to OFF.

Next Speech, Inking and Typing section and click "Stop getting to know me". This will help you turn off the speech tracking through dictation or Cortana.

Shelby, NC

Friday, April 29, 2016

Locky Ransomware

Make sure you know the person emailing you and have that Antivirus up to date.

Be on the lookout for that email.
Locky ransomware is spreading via spam email and a considerable security threat that is now widely spread.
And comes in with subjects as:  Invoice, Scanned Image using your email address, Outstanding Account, Attached Picture, Price list and more. 

Locky payment method

Locky’s payment system for decrypting files is the same as that of numerous other ransomwares. Locky’s website is hidden inside the Tor network and the ransom can only be paid with BitCoins. The decryption price is likely based on how many files are encrypted and the ransom value typically starts at 0.5 BitCoins.

Make sure you have antivirus installed

As always, don’t open suspicious attachments (e.g. .doc, .xls, and .zip files)

Keep recent backup copies of important data in a secure place offline

National Cyber Awareness System:
04/29/2016 09:45 PM EDT

Original release date: April 29, 2016
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has released an article addressing the proliferation of ransomware campaigns. Ransomware is a type of malicious software that infects a computer and restricts users' access to it until a ransom is paid to unlock it. Individuals and organizations are discouraged from paying the ransom, as this does not guarantee access will be restored.
Shelby, NC

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

New Cryptolocker, Locky Ransomware Installers Can Infect Computers Without Users Clicking Anything, Say Researchers

“Up till now most ransomware seen required a person to interact with it to infect the system,”
According to Malwarebytes research this particular attack was unique in that it used video ads to distribute its cocktail of malware among which were classic ransomware software like Cryptolocker, TeslaCrypt and Locky. Users didn’t need to click on the ad at all. Once the page loaded, the video began doing a drive-by malware installation on victims’ computers.

“We see a rise in attacks every weekend,” but this was really out of the ordinary in terms of the numbers of publishers that were affected and the ad networks that were involved.

By using a sophisticated and unusual method of infection that went undetected even by Google ad networks, the campaign had widespread reach. Below are some of the sites that were infected and pushing out the virus
when visited. That since have been cleaned. But rest assured they will show up even more.

Malwarebytes list of online publishers targeted in March video malware campaign.
“The ads that were infected were video ads, which is why they made it through”

How to protect yourself.
Make sure you have antivirus installed
As always, don’t open suspicious attachments (e.g. .doc, .xls, and .zip files)
Keep recent backup copies of important data in a secure place either online or offline.


Monday, March 7, 2016

Boost Wi-Fi throughout your home!!! 

Boost Wi-Fi throughout your home and even the backyard, Eliminate Wi-Fi dead zones in hard to reach areas. 

The extender should be placed about 1/2 the distance from the area where the pour signal is. But must be in range of the current wifi router to work. They are easy to setup and you can also hook a wired device to it as well. The link below to purchase below also have a detailed video on setup as well.

Wifi Extender 

Shelby, NC