It seems like every day there’s a new ransomware threat to be worried about. And, unfortunately, cybercriminals are getting more creative in the ways they try to infect your devices with ransomware. One of the latest methods involves using fake Windows 10 updates to smuggle malware onto your system.
Here’s how it works: cybercriminals will create a fake update for Windows 10 that looks identical to the real thing. They’ll then post the update on fake software download sites, or even bundle it into other malware programs. When you try to install the updates, they’ll infect your system with ransomware instead.
Once your system is infected, the ransomware will encrypt your files and demand a ransom for the decryption key. In some cases, the cybercriminals will also threaten to delete your files if you don’t pay up. As you can imagine, this can be a hugely stressful and costly experience.
Fortunately, there are some things you can do to protect yourself from this type of attack. First, only download updates for Windows 10 from the official Microsoft website. Second, be sure to have a reliable anti-malware program installed on your system and keep it up-to-date. And finally, always keep a recent backup of your files just in case something does go wrong.
Magniber Strain Targeting Windows 10
IT Infrastructure teams are used to fending off cyberattacks, but they may not be prepared for the sophisticated new strain of ransomware known as Magniber. This malware is spread through fake Windows 10 updates, which look almost identical to the real thing. Once installed, Magniber encrypts all of the files on a victim’s computer and demands a ransom for the decryption key. What makes this ransomware so dangerous is that it only targets computers that have specific IT infrastructure software installed. This allows the attackers to tailor their attack and makes it much more likely that they will be able to successfully encrypt the victim’s files. As a result, IT infrastructure teams need to be on the lookout for fake Windows 10 updates and be sure to install security updates as soon as they are available.
Magniber Targets Students & Non-Business Computer Users
According to Toronto cybersecurity professional, Sruli Wolff with Wolff Adar IT Solutions “Recent research suggests Magniber is particularly prevalent among non-professional users like students and other everyday computer users. These individuals are often less well-equipped to deal with such threats, and thus may prove to be especially vulnerable targets.”
Magniber Went After Internet Explorer Users
At first glance, it may seem like an odd choice for a ransomware campaign to target users who are still using Internet Explorer. After all, IE has been criticized for its security vulnerabilities in the past, and Microsoft has been urging users to switch to its more modern browser, Edge. However, there is a method to this apparent madness, according to Los Angeles IT services professional, Holden Watne with Generation IX. “Users who are still using IE tend to be those who are either unaware of the risks or have resisted change. This makes them prime targets for ransomware, as they are less likely to have strong security measures in place.”
Watne concluded “In addition, many organizations continue to use IE for compatibility reasons, making it a lucrative target for cybercriminals. As a result, Initially targeting users who were still using Internet Explorer was a savvy move on the part of the Magniber attackers.”