Cryptolocker

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    What is Cryptolocker?

    Cryptolocker is a ransomware virus that encrypts files on an infected computer and demands payment for key to decrypt the files. The original Cryptolocker virus first appeared in 2013 and was permanently neutralized in May 2014, but variations of Cryptolocker ransomware -- some using the Cryptolocker name – continue to plague individuals and organizations today.

    What is Cryptolocker?

    What happens during a Cryptolocker attack?

    In a Cryptolocker attack, the virus arrives at a computer via an email or spam message that contains a weaponized attachments or links to a malicious website. The attachment may resemble an invoice, shipping notice, fax report or Office document. When the attachment is opened, the Cryptolocker virus encrypts a large number of files – presentations, spreadsheets, Word docs, PDFs, images and many others. Users then see a message informing them the files have been encrypted and instructing them how to pay the ransom to get the decryption code.

    What happens during a Cryptolocker attack?

    How to prevent Cryptolocker attacks

    Cryptolocker prevention requires awareness among users and powerful anti ransomware technology that can prevent users from clicking on malicious links or opening malicious attachments. And when those measures fail to block ransomware like Cryptolocker, having robust backup and recovery tools can mitigate the damage caused by an attack.

    How to prevent Cryptolocker attacks

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    Cryptolocker detection and protection with Mimecast

    Mimecast provides state-of-the-art protection against Cryptolocker attacks and other advanced threats. As an all-in-one, cloud-based subscription service, Mimecast offers tools for email security, archiving and continuity that reduce the risk and cost of managing business email.

    To protect against ransomware, Mimecast email security services scan all incoming and archived email and block access to suspicious URLs and attachments. Mimecast scans the destination websites of every link on every click, blocking access to any website that may be malicious. Mimecast also scans the contents of attachments and either sandboxes them preemptively or rewrites them to a safe format so users can access them immediately. Mimecast also provides tools and training that empower end-users to identify and mitigate attacks like Cryptolocker, phishing, spear-phishing, impersonation fraud and other sophisticated threats.

    Cryptolocker detection and protection with Mimecast

    How to recover from a Cryptolocker attack

    When your users and security defenses fail to detect ransomware, Mimecast helps to mitigate the impact of an attack by providing access to copies of files and emails stored in an off-site archive. By keeping multiple copies of files in Mimecast's cloud archive, administrators can easily recover after a Cryptolocker attack, quickly restoring access to users' email and files without disruption to business.

    Learn more about preventing Cryptolocker attacks with Mimecast.

    How to recover from a Cryptolocker attack

    History of Cryptolocker

    Cryptolocker emerged in the fall of 2013 and became the first widely-recognized ransomware, in ransom during its original reign of cyberattacks.

    A multinational coalition of government agencies, academics, and technology companies took down Cryptolocker’s distribution with Operation Tovar, which also enabled many organizations to recover data they had lost.

    Subsequent variants of ransomware similar to Cryptolocker have been ambushing organizations around the world ever since, but organizations are also learning better ways to prevent ransomware attacks by partnering with cybersecurity service providers like Mimecast.

    To learn more about how Mimecast can help prevent Cryptolocker ransomware attacks, schedule a demo.

    History of Cryptolocker

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    Expert Insights to Help Prevent Cryptolocker Ransomware

    Additional email security resources to help prevent ransomware: