Sean Forster

PC PAL Watford and Stanmore

Hi, my name is Sean Forster and I’m your Local PC PAL Computer Engineer for Stanmore, Watford and surrounding areas. I provide a computer and laptop repair and support service to homes and small offices in the local area. PC PAL comes out to you. At a time that’s convenient to you.
Tips & How-to's 23rd November 2016 910

Recently, a customer was faced with the prospect of a major data loss.

All their data had been encrypted by some malicious software. Although uncertain, this software probably arrived via an email attachment. Once the encryption process had completed its task a message was displayed on the screen informing the customer that their files were locked and to go to a specific website in order to pay a fee to get the unlock code for their files. Invariably with this type of situation the paying of the ransom will not guarantee that you’ll get your data back. A double whammy perhaps.

The customers system utilised an online backup service which proved a good thing. As their was an external hard drive attached (for backup too) the data on this was also encrypted and thus of little use. In a twist, the online backup system continued doing its job and backed up the newly encrypted files and deleted the originals.

Although a long winded process the problem was resolved and, from the customers perspective, lessons learned.

In order to restrict the damage that can be caused by this type of issue consider: backup to more than one media; make carrying out a backup a regular process; detach any external hard drives from the system when not in use; if using online backup ensure file versioning is available and finally, use caution when considering opening email attachments (even when supposedly from people you know).

Take a proactive rather than reactive approach with your data security.

Sean Forster

Hi, my name is Sean Forster and I’m your Local PC PAL Computer Engineer for Stanmore, Watford and surrounding areas. I provide a computer and laptop repair and support service to homes and small offices in the local area. PC PAL comes out to you. At a time that’s convenient to you.

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