In short, yes! However, that doesn’t mean everything can be recovered.
And in general, it isn’t the best attitude to have – waiting for it to happen.
You don’t have to give in to these e-criminals. Contrary to popular belief, you can take back the reigns.
There are so many types of malware around, ransomware really is a serious pain! Not all of it is difficult though.
Some you’ll be able to remove without losing any files but others, that isn’t the case.
You’ll need to know about the specific ransomware to start with because the way to remove it can be varied, depending on the attacker.
It could be as simple as a virus scan, others need an offline scan and others even more advanced recovery of any files.
The first thing to figure out, is which type of ransomware it is, scareware, lock-screen or the horrible stuff.
Scareware is usually easiest to remove – it pretends to be anti-virus that has found lots of issues and wants you to pay to fix things. You can usually still use your PC but expect alerts and pop-ups galore.
Be aware though, some may still stop you from running any programs.
Lock-screen viruses tend to be a little more complex – they do what they say on the tin. You won’t be able to use your PC in any way, whatsoever. You’ll boot up Windows and find you’re faced with a full screen window you can’t get rid of.
The worrying thing is, they’ll often pretend to be part of the law or a reputable company such as Microsoft – you’ll have supposedly broken a law or find your copy of Windows has all of a sudden, been banned.
The horrible stuff
This stuff has the name because it is horrible, nasty stuff. It is by far the worst variation and makes many panic. Why? Well, it encrypts and locks your personal files until you pay up.
The slightly positive news is, if you have backed up your files – you should be able to recover them. And even if you haven’t, there’s still a chance you can recover them, albeit slim.
Removing the ransomware
The first thing you have to do is eliminate the cyber criminal.
With scareware, you can usually follow a procedure whereby you enter Windows in Safe Mode and running a scanner like Malwarebytes.
However, if the ransomware doesn’t let you start Windows or run any programs like most Lock-Screen does – you might have to run a System Restore – this rolls Windows back to a safer historical state.
Don’t worry, this won’t affect any personal files, so any documents and photos you have will still be there, it just reverts system files back to a time before the ransomware came along, if of course you have the system restore function enabled.
Report it ASAP
There are many guides online on how to try and remove the ransomware yourself. However, the issue here is that it won’t take into consideration the context of the PC.
You should consider contacting your IT Support as soon as possible to report the threat. They’re better placed to understand the impact to the network.
It could have spread onto the network or onto other machines – they’ll be able to quickly eliminate the threat and get you back working quicker.
Whether you’re a business, charity or other organisation – the moment you notice the ransomware – call 0300 123 2040 immediately. It is available 24/7. If you’re experiencing an attack at home, you should call to but they are open Monday-Friday 8am-8pm for the public.
Why? Well they can help you eliminate the threat too, but it is important we build resilience together. They have a database of different keys too that can be used to release the ransomware – even if you do this, it is worth calling your IT Support to ensure they can ensure there is no threat to the rest of the network.
If you need more information on Cyber Security – feel free to contact us for a friendly chat on the measures you can put in place to help be more proactive against these threats.