Saudi Ambassador to Guinea and Sierra Leone Bids Farewell to 1st Batch of Guinean Pilgrims    KSrelief Delivers A Gift of 25 Tons of Dates from Saudi Arabia to Togo    King, Crown Prince congratulate presidents of Croatia, Slovenia and Mozambique    The Crown Prince's regional tour and the upcoming summit    Toyota recalls electric cars over concerns about loose wheels    UK workshop seeks to lure investors to Saudi Arabia's mining sector    Conflict, drought, dwindling food support, threatens lives of 20 million in Ethiopia    FIFA increases squad limit to 26 for World Cup    KSrelief Concludes Anti-Blindness Campaign in Garoua, Cameroon, by Conducting 423 Surgeries    KSrelief Dispatches Over 100 Relief Trucks to Yemen Through Al-Wadiah Land Port    FIFA Accredits Saudi Football Association Among Expert Federations in VAR Tech    10-year jail, SR10m fine for distributing adulterated food among pilgrims    US Senate passes first gun control bill in decades    Talking to the Taliban 'only way forward' in Afghanistan    Monkeypox: Amid uncertainty, global situation cannot be ignored, says WHO chief    Saudi Ambassador to Tunisia Takes Part in Tunisia Forum for Investment    Saudi Arabia reaffirms commitment to women empowerment Economic participation by Saudi females up 94% in 3 years    Two killed as electric car falls from third floor of Shanghai office building    Al-Hilal one win away from 3rd SPL title in a row    Anthony Joshua defends Saudi Arabia when asked about 'sportswashing'    Saudi Arabia, Djibouti Sign Joint Cooperation Agreement on Maritime Transport    Blood transfusion at IMC for patient with complex condition qualifies him for surgery    GCC Food Safety Committee Holds its Sixth Meeting    Saudi Stock Market Index Ends Down at Level of 11310.67 Points    Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources Visits London Metal Exchange    Flyadeal Launches First Direct Flight to Khartoum    NEOM launches program to develop next generation of Saudi football talent    Al-Khorayef visits London Metal Exchange    Belgian blogger: Saudi Arabia is safer than America and Europe    Rupert Murdoch and Jerry Hall are to split: US media    SFDA Extends Period for Submitting Requests for Compliance Forms for Food Transportation during Hajj    CITC Publishes Public Consultation on Regulatory Framework for NTN, Information Document for NTN Spectrum Auction    GASTAT: Saudi Arabia's overall merchandise exports increased by 98.0% in April 2022    Celebrating the union of body and soul: UN marks International Yoga Day    Jeddah is Set to Host the Finals of World Boxing in August, Organizers Announce    President of AFC Congratulates Saudi Olympic Team on Winning Asia Cup U23    Saudi National Olympic Team Crowned AFC U23 Asian Cup    Samrat Prithviraj: Why did a Bollywood film on a popular Hindu king fail?    Saudi Film "The Journey" Wins Best Experimental Film at Dutch Septimius Awards    ALECSO Director: Islamic Arts Biennale Is Extension of Saudi Arabia's Cultural Movement    Saudi Council of Senior Scholars slams Indian ruling party leader's remarks against Prophet    Diriyah Biennale Foundation Announces Hajj Terminal in Jeddah as Location for First-ever Islamic Arts Biennale    Drug charges dropped against Shah Rukh Khan's son    Shoura members propose equal blood money for men and women, Muslim and non-Muslim    Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques addresses citizens and all Muslims on the occasion of the Holy month of Ramadan    Pilgrims Perform Dhuhr and Asr Prayers at Arafat Holy Site    Council of Senior Scholars: Muslim Brothers' Group Don't Represent Method of Islam, rather only Follows its Partisan Objectives, Violating our Graceful Religion    Eid Al-Adha Prayer Performed at the Grand Holy Mosque    







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Data held hostage
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 10 - 06 - 2015


Molouk Y. Ba-Isa
Saudi Gazette


According to the Sophos “Threatsaurus,” “Ransomware is software that denies you access to your files or computer until you pay a ransom.” Basically what happens is that through a phishing email, malicious code gets downloaded into your computer. Then your data is held hostage in a password protected file until you pay a criminal a certain amount of money to get the password to open the file folder.
Intel Security just released its McAfee Labs Threats Report: May 2015, which advises that there's been a massive increase in ransomware as well as huge jump in malware targeting Adobe Flash multimedia software. In the first quarter of 2015, McAfee Labs registered a 165 percent increase in new ransomware, driven largely by the hard-to-detect CTB-Locker ransomware family, a new ransomware family called Teslacrypt, and the emergence of new versions of CryptoWall, TorrentLocker and BandarChor. McAfee Labs attributes CTB-Locker's success to clever techniques for evading security software, higher-quality phishing emails and an “affiliate” program that offers accomplices a percentage of ransom payments in return for flooding cyberspace with CTB-Locker phishing messages.
McAfee Labs suggests organizations and individuals make it a priority to learn how to recognize phishing emails, including the use of tools such as the Intel Security Phishing Quiz at https://phishingquiz.mcafee.com/

The first quarter also saw new Adobe Flash malware samples increase by 317 percent - researchers attribute the rise to several factors: the popularity of Adobe Flash as a technology; user delay in applying available Adobe Flash patches; new methods to exploit product vulnerabilities; a steep increase in the number of mobile devices that can play Adobe Flash files (.swf); and the difficulty of detecting some Adobe Flash exploits. Forty-two new Adobe Flash vulnerabilities were submitted to the National Vulnerability Database in Q1. On the same day those vulnerabilities were posted, Adobe made initial fixes available for all of them. Now, more effort needs to go into convincing users to patch their Adobe Flash software promptly.
The May 2015 report also identified a number of other developments in the first quarter of 2015:

* PC Malware Growth. The first quarter saw a slight decline in new PC malware, a development primarily due to the activity of one adware family, SoftPulse, which spiked in Q4 2014 and returned to normal levels in Q1 2015. The McAfee Labs malware “zoo” grew 13 percent during that time, and now contains 400 million samples.
* Mobile Malware. The number of new mobile malware samples jumped by 49 percent from Q4 2014 to Q1 2015.

* SSL-Attacks. SSL-related attacks continued in Q1 2015, although they tapered off in number relative to Q4 2014. This reduction is likely the result of SSL library updates that have eliminated many of the vulnerabilities exploited in prior quarters. Shellshock attacks are still quite prevalent since their emergence late last year.

* Spam Botnets. The Dyre, Dridex, and Darkmailer3.Slenfbot botnets overtook Festi and Darkmailer2 as the top spam networks; pushing pharmaceuticals, stolen credit cards and “shady” social-media marketing tools.


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