Screen-locking ransomware infects your computer by inhibiting your access to the operating system. When your computer is being compromised with this Ransomware, you’ll come across a ransom note claiming to be from law enforcement agencies like the FBI. The message will stimulate fearmongering amongst the IT staff and ask you a specific amount to regain access to your computer.
In most cases, this infection happens when you visited a malicious website, clicked a malicious link, or opened a malicious attachment.
In this article, we want you to grasp this concept better, so you can protect yourself and educate your team before a nefarious actor attempts to execute an attack.
Screen-locking Ransomware – Apply These Steps Immediately
Before you start taking some corrective measures to regain access to your files and system, we strongly recommend you to do these steps beforehand:
- Immediately disconnect your device from all the external devices and the internet to block the spread of the virus. Unplug all external devices from your systems, such as external hard drives and USB. Lastly, don’t forget to disconnect wired and wireless internet connection.
- Use a smartphone to capture the picture of the ransom note. This picture will make sure that you have a piece of evidence that helps you to report a crime to concerned authorities.
Approaches to Recover Your Computer from screen-locking Ransomware
Depending on the type of Ransomware your computer is facing, you can choose from many available options to regain access to your computer and decrypt your files. Follow the steps listed below to restore access to your system. If you find these steps difficult to implement, consider taking help from a security practitioner.
It is worth mentioning here that you can’t decrypt all your files by just removing the Ransomware. In most cases, you will lose the ability to pay the ransom and unlock your files by removing the Ransomware.
Cautiously speaking, only remove the Ransomware if you are fully confident that you can recover your files or are determined not to pay a single penny to the ransom creator.
- Restart the computer in safe mode and use antivirus software to remove the virus. Safe mode only permits trusted software to run on your computer. Thus, malware will not be able to run along with another application of your computer. You can easily download antivirus software (or you might have that already) to remove the antivirus from the computer.
- Explore the windows restore feature. Almost all Windows computers and other reputed operating systems have built-in Windows restore features that allow you to return your computer to its original state if your system is compromised. The Microsoft guide on system restoration is available on its official website. If you cannot reach the recovery screen, but you have access to a USB disk for that particular version of Windows, reboot using that and select the option ’Repair Your Computer’ instead of installing the operating system from scratch.