Shielding from Malware activities

Malware ,computerized progamme designed to perform unwanted actions and to steal and damage the data of the user. Cyber criminals continue to advance their malicious software developments to attack the organisation/company/individual. Therefore, proactive measure should be taken to prevent the data stealing and compromising of IT resources that can be caused by the known and unknown risks/threats.

The Entry points for a Malware

A malware is an executable which can have any form,i.e.,:

  • An Email attachment,
  • A link in the Email or text message,
  • A malicious file package downloaded on your computer system or mobile device,
    • Mobile app’s APK download from the browser and not from the official appstore,
    • Installation of any application/software from social media platforms,
    • Installation of various keyboards­­­­ for gaming purpose,
    • Installation of unverified mobile cleaning apps,
    • Installation of crack version of the software,
  • Connation with public Wi-Fi,
  • Device connection with public charging ports (Juice jacking),
  • A malicious executable file (.doc,.pdf and .jpeg etc.) in a pen drive or any other storage media,
  • Or any other zero day vulnerability affecting a particular application or the complete device.

Proactive Measures- Combatting malicious software i.e. “Malware”

To prevent your digital gadget from getting infected from a malware, the precautionary measures are as follows:

  • Keep your operating system, browsers, plugins, etc. updated,
  • Do not respond to unsolicited text messages containing web links and phone numbers etc.
  • Install licensed version of security utilities to provide the best security shield to your device,
  • Always use licensed operating system, software and mobile applications,
  • Watch out for social engineering attacks& stay wary of phishing emails,
  • Never click on links or download attachments coming from un-trusted on unknown sources, always scan the files with anti-virus utilities before executing them,
  • Practice safe browsing, do not download any pirated or cracked versions of software,
  • Change your passwords periodically,
  • Use Strong random passwords, wherever possible, use two factor authentication, i.e., password & OTP,
  • Refrain from using un-encrypted public connections,
  • Back up your system and your files to a trusted cloud-based service, or have your backups stored on an external drive (Or both),
  • Protect your device with a layer of security like firewall and antivirus utilities having anti-spyware and anti-malware cover as well,
  • Monitor automatic updates and downloads.

If your gadget gets infected with a malware, you should take certain necessary steps such as:

  • Isolate the infected device(s) from the network immediately,
  • Photograph any ransom notes or screen locks presenting themselves,
  • Take note of any author names, websites, emails, TOR links, crypto addresses that may be listed,
  • Check financial records, customer logs, backup directories, any documents,media files and other confidential data, and assess what you might have lost.
  • Preserve the current state of the device, if it is ON, leave it in the ON state only, as important artifacts may be found in a live system,
  • Inform the cyber cell about the incident as-it-happens and with properly documented evidence.

All the above mentioned reactive measures will help you to handle the malware properly, which will assist the law enforcement agencies to investigate effectively.

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