June 14th 2014
The National Crime Agency (NCA) is today reminding UK computer users that there is still time to protect themselves from the Gameover Zeus and CryptoLocker malicious software threats we alerted you to almost two weeks ago. At Get Safe Online, our advice is to take a little time this weekend to ensure you are protected if you have a Windows PC or an Apple Mac running the operating system.
On Monday 2 June, the NCA announced that an international operation had temporarily weakened the global network of infected computers, providing a particularly strong two-week opportunity for members of the public to rid themselves of the malware and help prevent future infection.
As an individual or a business, by updating security software, running system scans to detect and clear infections, and checking that computer operating systems are up to date, you can take advantage of the criminal network’s relative weakness. The agency strongly recommends taking these steps as soon as possible before midnight on Tuesday 17 June.
It is also emphasising the dangers of opening ‘spam’ emails and downloading unknown attachments – the most common means of infection.
The malware known as Gameover Zeus (aka GOZeus or P2PZeus) is designed to steal banking information from personal computers, while CryptoLocker encrypts your user-created files such as business documents and photographs, only releasing them in return for a ransom of hundreds of pounds.
Current intelligence indicateds that UK GoZeuS and CryptoLocker infections have reduced since 2 June, but thousands of systems remain affected or at risk.
Enhancing security after the two-week period has elapsed will still be effective against cyber crime threats, but may not give the enhanced protection available while the cyber criminals' infrastructure is weakened.
You can find more in-depth information about the threat on this website by clicking here. Alternatively, click on one of the links below to access free tools made available by internet security software vendors. They are designed to work whether or not you have that company's internet security package installed.
F-Secure Online scanner (all versions of Windows). No download, installation or administrative rights required)
F-Secure Rescue CD (Windows XP systems)
http://support.kaspersky.com/viruses/utility#kasperskyvirusremovaltool (if you think your computer is infected with malware)
http://support.kaspersky.com/8005 (WindowsUnlocker utility for if your computer is infected with CryptoLocker)
http://www.sophos.com/VirusRemoval (Windows XP (SP2) and above)
http://goz.heimdalsecurity.com/ (Microsoft Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8 and 8.1.)
http://www.microsoft.com/security/scanner/en-us/default.aspx Microsoft Safety Scanner (Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP)
(Windows XP, Vista, Windows, Windows 8/8.1, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2008, and Windows Server 2008 R2).
Report a loss
If you think you have lost money through malware such as Gameover Zeus and CryptoLocker, you should report it to Action Fraud at www.actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.