Cybersecurity experts: More ransomware attacks expected in 2017

Posted at 4:14 PM, Dec 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-22 19:25:34-05

If you believe in New Year's resolutions, protecting yourself from cyberattacks should be on the list.

Cybersecurity experts predict 2017 to be another year of ransomware -- computer code that shuts down systems until the victim pays up.

"If people didn't get a backup drive for Christmas for their computer, now would be a good time to buy a backup drive," said ESET Senior Security Researcher Stephen Cobb.

Cobb said people need to be aware of and be on the lookout for ransomware.

He said a new year brings new ways for the hackers to target you and your personal information.

Cobb said for some "bad guys," ransomware has become a 9-to-5 job.

"You have a lot of people getting into it because it's easy money at low risk," he said.

Other cyberattacks can take the form of phishing, and Cobb said people need to pay close attention and avoid taking the bait.

"If you look carefully, you can see it's coming from a strange email address," he said. "Those [Yahoo or Gmail] services, your bank, they don't send you an email asking you to give them the password."

There are ways to protect yourself from cyber criminals.

"If you haven't got a good security suite on your laptops and your tablets, you really need to be doing that," he said.

Cobb said our homes now run like a small company network and for many homes the router is the gateway.

If you protect the router, it could keep people off your network and stop prying eyes from poking around. That means changing the default password.

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