Advice for 'CryptoLocker'

Over the past few days we have seen a rise in cases affected by particularly destructive piece of Malware dubbed as “CryptoLocker”.  We just wanted to make sure everybody became aware of this and knows the preventative steps to take.

What is CryptoLocker?

Cryptolocker is a piece of ‘malware’ or ‘ransom ware’ which is currently is being distributed by Email,  it is usually seen as an email attachment from emails claiming to be from trusted sources such as the ‘@HMRC’, ‘Scanner@’ or a variant ‘VAT-returns’

The virus encrypts the files on your hard drive with a high level of encryption, making them inaccessible. A demand is then made for payment for the key to decrypt them. You are given a period of time to make the payment and if payment is not made the key is deleted and your files are irretrievably encrypted.

TSG would not recommend making this payment.

Once your files are encrypted, they are unrecoverable other than from a backup.

How to Protect yourself

If your AV is current and Up To Date, you should be protected by this.

  • As a rule do not open attachments from unknown sources or from emails which appear to be from a legitimate source but are suspicious. HMRC and Parcel carriers are a particular popular disguise for this sort of attack. Always question an email attachment if you are not expecting it.
  • Keep your machine patched with current security patches.
  • Make regular backups of your important files
  • Make sure your AV solution is current and up to date.

More details of the virus can be found via our security partners Sophos, here:

For more security tips you can download our Security Polocy whitepaper here