Now the world is threatened with continuous ransomware attacks, GoldenEye has created a great loss for many entities world-wide, including companies, government offices, advertising agencies and even a nuclear power plant in Ukraine.
The ransomware wreaks havoc on any system it infects, taking control and encrypting valuable files.
According to the cyber security experts at Cyberogism, there are some ways people can combat this scenario. But it will require you to stay focused and alert to notice any unusual and unknown activities happening on your computer.
1. Back Up Your Files, Always
One of the first steps you should do is back up all of your important files and folders. You should not ignore this step, as it will be your primary key to preventing data loss.
You can always update your operating system and software programs, but not your documents, music, pictures and other important files that are valuable to you.
Never neglect to regularly back up your files—you can even schedule the backups automatically, but just make sure you make it a habit of doing so frequently and correctly. The periodic backup copies will come to your aid if you’re ever at a loss for options.
2. Identify & Fix the Vulnerability
Most of the time, any vulnerability that exists within your system becomes the ultimate target for any cyber attack. So, it is vital to keep your system updated and secure.
Renew your operating system with latest OS updates and patches. Install the latest software versions and modernize your system with virus definitions.
To protect your computer, make sure you install reputable anti-virus or anti-malware software, like Malwarebytes or HitmanPro, among other programs. This the easiest and most efficient way to block ransomware.
3. Utilize Restore Points
Another way to recover your system is to have restore points in your system. Even if you are infected with the GoldenEye ransomware, you can retrieve old system files on your PC from previous dates by using System Restore points.
Set automatic restore points for every new install, if any changes have taken place on your system.
4. Prevention: Maintain a Strong Password
The ultimate tip to avoid any cyber attack is maintaining a strong password for all your devices. This preventative measure enhances your system's security by eradicating malicious attacks that could easily take place if you have a password that’s easy for hackers to figure out.
So, make sure you create a long strong, mixed-character password complete with different elements such as symbols, capitalized letters and numbers.
5. Disable WMI Service (Windows Management Instrumentation)
When you have enabled the Windows Management Instrumentation service on your device, the function will send information about your PC remotely. This service will automatically start while you boot your system under the Local System account.
Disabling this facility will protect anyone from managing, monitoring or getting information from your PC remotely.
6. Disable “SMB1”
GoldenEye uses the vulnerability in the SMB service to spread into more systems and perform encryption on files. As a point of caution, it is recommended that you disable the SMB1 function, as it is a very old protocol that is no longer relevant.
7. Protect Hard Disk MBR
The GoldenEye ransomware easily tampers with and encrypts the hard disk MBR because of a vulnerability within that system. As such, you should take the necessary steps to protect your MBR records with software like the MBR Guard from IObit, for example.
If you are infected with GoldenEye, the ransomware will ask for the system restart to change your MBR and to load the kernel. Be attentive to disable the reboot in the Windows system when a system crashes—if not, it will encrypt the entire MFT.
Be cautious of all documents contained in emails from unknown and untrusted senders. Analyze all of your outgoing and incoming emails to detect, filter and to execute. Have a firewall across your network, and make a classified list of programs to run on your device or over your network.
More tips and suggestions can also be obtained from experts at Cyberogism. Overall, the best game plan to fight against GoldenEye, or any other ransomware attack, is to ensure the fundamental security steps are executed properly.