For any dedicated and loyal Mac users that are familiar with Apple’s Operating System, you are likely very familiar with it’s capability to keep out an malware, viruses, hackers, and ransomware. Personally, that is why I purchased mine. I was fed-up with viruses and warning coming into my Window’s programs.
I have bad news to report to you. Researchers at Palo Alto Networks reported finding “the first fully functional ransomware seen on the OS X platform,” according to their post on March 6. What does that mean exactly? Is your computer at risk now?
Let’s Talk ‘Ransomware’
Ransomware is exactly what you would guess from reading the word. Cyber criminals infiltrate your computer and they hold your data hostage. Then they demand that you pay them if you want your files returned. Generally they demand digital currency for payments. They want to assure that they won’t be traced.
Apple has not responded directly to this breach just yet. Palo Alto did say in their post that, after it reported the occurrence to Apple, the makers of Mac shut down the infiltration and updated their anti-virus system.
How To Protect Your Devices and Data
These ransomware attacks can be extremely overwhelming and terrifying for consumers if their stolen data contains personal information, personal and priceless items, or any kind of financial information. It is important to backup any important information to an external hard drive, but you may want to also install and anti-virus software or malware protection to your devices.
If your personal information is leaked or stolen, your risk of identity theft skyrockets. It will take a significant amount of time and financial burden to recover from identity theft. If that happens, you can say farewell to any type of good credit score you might have. Beyond that, it only gets worse, like a thief taking your Social Security Number, it is a risk of fraud that will last forever.
Make sure you are extremely mindful and aware of anything going on among your devices or accounts. Monitor your credit score and keep your accounts on close watch.
Having a plan of how to deal with cyberattacks is just as important as protecting yourself in the first place. You will always want the best financial plan and security plan to protect you and your family’s information and data.
Visit familyresourcehub.org for more information on identity theft and how best to protect yourself.