Ransomware using Software Crack-Sites to distribute ransomware. Crack Sites promises to unlock a user’s downloaded files extorting them after the download. The user thinks he’s getting a free unlock for some software he just downloaded (most often, Microsoft’s Windows 10), but after he downloads and runs the file, the downloaded file is password protected.
Since the user has to enter a password to access the locked files manually, ransomware software goes undetected. That allows the threat actors to neatly side-step Microsoft’s SmartScreen, Google’s Safe Browsing, or the security protocols included in whatever anti-malware software on the system.
If you have downloaded Software Crack and found yourself with locked files, unless you’ve made a recent backup, you’re at the mercy of the hackers. The hackers using ransomware have extorted between $250 and as much as $10,000 from users to get their files back.
The hackers are surprisingly professional using their ransomware, or as professional as hackers can be expected to be. You’ll even be able to live chat with a hacker “customer service representative” who will walk you through the ransom paying process. In a demonstration of ‘good faith,’ they’ll even decrypt one file for you for free, so you can see that they do indeed have the capability of restoring all of them.
The Fix is a Simple One
If you don’t want to run the risk of downloading some hackers’ ransomware Software-Crack, don’t use cracked software. Spend the money to buy a legitimate copy. Sure, you might get lucky if you use a crack. Then again, you might wind up with all your files encrypted and dealing with ransomware.
It’s just not worth the modest savings involved.