Ransomware is nothing new, indeed the first known example dates back thirty years to the 1989 AIDS Trojan, and the first extortion ransomware appearing fourteen years ago in 2005.
While the problem is nothing new, a collective response by expert partners is somewhat younger. Starting in 2016 as a joint initiative by the National High-Tech Crime Unit of the Netherlands’ police, Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre and McAfee, the No More Ransom! portal now boasts 150 partners around the globe, and celebrating their third anniversary recently announced they had already prevented more than £86m in ransom payments.
The project has two main aims which are firstly to educate users about how ransomware works and the countermeasures which might be taken, since prevention is easier than being tasked with sorting out an infected system. The second aim is to help users avoid the need to make ransom payments should their system become infected.
The project is based around Crypto-Sheriff, a tool which is designed to help identify the type of ransomware affecting a device, and check to see if there is a decryption solution available. Via Crypto-Sheriff, you can also report the infection of your system as a crime.
The following video explains how Crypto-Sheriff works: