Ransomware Survey: What People Don't Know Can Hurt Them

Next story

By Stephen Cobb, Sr. Security Researcher, ESET

Family photos and videos. Tax returns and other financial records. Business documents. Think about everything that you keep on your computer. What would happen if it all was stolen from you?

That’s what a ransomware attack does. Criminals use this nasty breed of software to reach out over your internet connection and kidnap the contents of your computer, literally holding them for ransom. Ransomware silently encrypts all of your personal files, making them unreadable, and then demands that you send money to the criminal in order to restore them.

We surveyed over 3,000 people across the U.S. and Canada to understand what knowledge everyday people have about ransomware and we learned some surprising information. Despite the widespread reporting of ransomware in the news in recent months, many people still don’t know what ransomware is. Even fewer people take the steps necessary to protect their data from a ransomware attack. Below are the results—and how to protect yourself.

Fortunately, protecting yourself is easier than you think. Read “The 5 Things You Need to Do to Protect Yourself from Ransomware.”