As science and technology developed rapidly in the 21st century, cyber crime has been developing gradually. Currently, ransom ware is one of the best-known criminal software’s around. Ransom ware is a combination of the words ransom and software. It is a type of malicious program that takes personal documents from computer or Smartphone users as hostages and demands money. Ransom ware has been known since 2005 and it rapidly spread worldwide in 2013. Korea is not a safe zone from the damage. The number of public institutions, enterprises and personal PCs that have been attacked by ransom ware is increasing every year. In fact, according to the statistics of the antivirus company Kaspersky Lab, in 2016, Korea has the third highest damage rate in the world of ransom ware infections accounting for 3.36%.
Ransom ware is difficult to be removed and causes a lot of damage, so it is important to understand damage patterns and preventive measures beforehand to prevent damage. Ransom ware can be infected by simply visiting the homepage in of an untrustworthy website. It can induce users to open emails by disguising themselves as content closely related to important daily life such as guidance for year-end tax adjustments and attaching receipts. If you click on the enticing item, a malicious code can be spread via attachments or URL links which can be easily infected and spread. Because most of the cases are where the hacker is not revealed and the server is overseas, once the infection has occurred, recovery and repairing the damage is considerably difficult. Therefore, in order to prevent ransom ware damage, it is necessary to regularly backup important files and check whether they are infected or not by using the latest version of antivirus software. It is very important to avoid clicking on emails from strangers. In fact, according to the '2017 Symantec Internet Security Threat Report (ISTR) 22' released last April, 87% of malicious code attacks such as ransom ware were made via email. The total number of emails with malicious codes inserted in 2014 was 244. However, it increased to one out of 220 in 2015, and last year, one out of 131 reported spam emails included malicious codes.
If you are infected with ransom ware, it is recommended to move important files to a USB memory stick, reformat the computer, and then initialize the computer. It is better to reject suggestions made by the ransom ware because not only is it uncertain whether the file will be recovered or not, if you pay for the file you want to recover, that money could be used as part of a vicious circle that traps another victim.
No measures have been taken by the government to deal with the damage of ransom ware, and public interest in preventing ransom ware is not so great. Ransom ware has a relatively low development cost and is highly likely to incur additional damage due to the high profitability of the attacks. Therefore, it is time for us to take appropriate measures to prevent such attacks and it is time for us to proactively fight ransom ware.