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Microsoft Secure

World Backup Day is as good as any to back up your data

In today’s security landscape, there are more threats to data than ever before. Beyond corruption caused by hardware or human failure, malware and cyberattacks can put data in serious danger.  That’s why it’s imperative for enterprises, small-and-medium businesses, and individuals to back up data. It must be implemented systematically, not just on World Backup Day...

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Ransomware operators are hiding malware deeper in installer packages

We are seeing a wave of new NSIS installers used in ransomware campaigns. These new installers pack significant updates, indicating a collective move by attackers to once again dodge AV detection by changing the way they package malicious code. These changes are observed in installers that drop ransomware like Cerber, Locky, and others. The trend...

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Ransomware: A declining nuisance or an evolving menace?

The volume of ransomware encounters is on a downward trend. Are we seeing the beginning of the end of this vicious threat? Unfortunately, a look at the attack vectors, the number of unique families released into the wild, and the improvements in malware code reveals otherwise. The trend towards increasingly sophisticated malware behavior, highlighted by...

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Improved scripts in .lnk files now deliver Kovter in addition to Locky

Modern social engineering attacks use non-portable executable (PE) files like malicious scripts and macro-laced documents. Every month, Windows Defender AV detects non-PE threats on over 10 million machines. Learn how machine learning drives next-gen protection capabilities and cloud-based, real-time blocking of new and unknown threats: Machine learning vs. social engineering Cybercriminals are using a combination...

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Averting ransomware epidemics in corporate networks with Windows Defender ATP

Microsoft security researchers continue to observe ransomware campaigns blanketing the market and indiscriminately hitting potential targets. Unsurprisingly, these campaigns also continue to use email and the web as primary delivery mechanisms. Also, it appears that most corporate victims are simply caught by the wide nets cast by ransomware operators. Unlike cyberespionage groups, ransomware operators do...

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Exploit kits remain a cybercrime staple against outdated software – 2016 threat landscape review series

Despite the disruption of Axpergle (Angler), which dominated the landscape in early 2016, exploit kits as a whole continued to be a threat to PCs running unpatched software. Some of the most prominent threats, from malvertising to ransomware, used exploit kits to infect millions of computers worldwide in 2016. The prevalence of exploit kits as...

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Been shopping lately? Fake credit card email can spook you into downloading Cerber ransomware

As the shopping sprees become increasingly frenetic during holiday season, it’s hard not to worry about how much credit card debt we’re piling. Some of us rely on email notifications from our banks to track the damage to our finances. So what happens when we suddenly get notified about charges for things we never bought?...

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Don’t let this Black Friday/Cyber Monday spam deliver Locky ransomware to you

We see it every year: social engineering attacks that take advantage of the online shopping activities around Black Friday and Cyber Monday, targeting customers of online retailers. This year, we’re seeing a spam campaign that Amazon customers need to be wary of. The fake emails pretend to be notifications from the online retailer that a...

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The new .LNK between spam and Locky infection

Modern social engineering attacks use non-portable executable (PE) files like malicious scripts and macro-laced documents. Every month, Windows Defender AV detects non-PE threats on over 10 million machines. Learn how machine learning drives next-gen protection capabilities and cloud-based, real-time blocking of new and unknown threats: Machine learning vs. social engineering Just when it seems the...

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Locky malware, lucky to avoid it

You may have seen reports of the Locky malware circulating the web; we think this is a good time to discuss its distribution methods, and reiterate some best-practice methods that will help prevent infection. We’ve seen Locky being distributed by spam email, not in itself a unique distribution method, but this means that spreading is...

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