Ransomware is a frustrating problem to deal with, for sure. When you open up a company computer and you’re met with a blaring image that says you need to send money in Bitcoin to a recipient to receive access to your files again, there are many things you may initially consider. In general, there are three options to fix the ransomware problem.
1. Pay the Ransom
The first option is, of course, to just pay the ransom. Some companies may opt for this option, especially if the ransom is relatively low or the files on the computer are extremely important and no backups exist. However, especially for companies, ransomware requirements can be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, making this a pricey option.
Additionally, paying the ransom isn’t a sure shot that you’ll get your files back. Ransomware hackers can just as easily extort the money from you, then keep the encryption on your files. In general, cybersecurity experts recommend that you never pay money to extortion hackers.
2. Try to Remove the Malware Without Paying
Your next option is ransomware removal that attempts to decrypt the ransomware lock without ever paying for the decryption. Certain computers, types of ransomware, and file storage systems may be more resistant against ransomware, which means someone might be able to go through your computer and remove it.
However, ransomware can hide anywhere in your computer, and you can’t be sure that ransomware is the only problem you’ve come up against. There may be other problems, like keystroke loggers, hiding in your computer software and continuing to pose a threat. That’s why it’s generally the best idea to start from scratch entirely.
3. Completely Wipe the System and Start From Scratch
Whether or not you’re able to decrypt your computer, it’s a good idea to completely format the computer’s hard drive, re-install your operating system, and start completely from scratch. That’s because your system may retain any amount of information from the malware infection, and the only way to avoid it entirely is to format your hard drive.
If you have a file backup, this may not actually be that much of a hassle; it’s likely that you have all your important files backed up to your cloud system anyway. Though it may be frustrating to take your hard drive to an expert and have them format it, it’s the best way to avoid potential future problems regarding the ransomware.
Although ransomware is a scary thing to face up against, it’s not something you have to just acquiesce to immediately. As a matter of fact, there are a variety of ways to avoid issues with ransomware. One of the best is to have a file backup that you use regularly to keep all your data safe from ransomware if it ever happens. No matter how you prepare for ransomware and how you deal with it if it impacts your company, remember that removing all traces is typically the safest solution