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ECT News Community   »   E-Commerce Times Talkback   »   Re: Yikes! Ransomware Could Take Over Your Hard Drive

Re: Yikes! Ransomware Could Take Over Your Hard Drive
Posted by: Peter S. Vogel 2015-01-05 11:04:29
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Malware is running rampant on the Internet, affecting smartphones, tablets and personal computers. Relatively new malware allows bad guys to encrypt devices until a ransom is paid. Usually the ransom is required in bitcoin, rather than U.S. currency, as it cannot be traced.
What are the legal and other risks associated with ransomware? Ransomware is largely directed at personal devices and small businesses, particularly since larger companies tend to have better Internet hygiene for their devices.

Re: Yikes! Ransomware Could Take Over Your Hard Drive
Posted by: Marcel Brown 2015-01-05 15:54:46 In reply to: Peter S. Vogel
However, there IS, in fact, a very practical solution for the problem of ransomware as well as most other malware. Simply stop using Microsoft Windows (and now apparently Android). In the past, not using Windows was definitely difficult for many, but in today's day and age, there are viable options other than Windows (obviously Apple's Macintosh and iOS devices are the simple answer).

Sure, there is no 100% secure system in existence, but let's get real. There are no known ransomwares for the Mac or iPhone/iPad. There are very few actual malwares for the Mac and absolutely zero for the iOS devices. So if we are talking practical security, getting away from Windows is an extraordinarily effective strategy. And please no one give me the tired old argument that the Mac doesn't have enough marketshare to attract virus writers. After 14 years of Mac OS X certainly some malware developers would have attacked the Mac if for no other reason than to prove they could. And don't forget 8 years later there have never been any malware for iOS. The truth is that Mac OS X, and other UNIX-dervied operating systems, are significantly more secure from an architectural standpoint. Windows has a faulty foundation and it's time for the IT industry to truthfully acknowledge that. How many more multi-million dollar Target, Home Depot, and Sony malware breaches do we need to hammer that point home?

At some point we need to start holding technology experts and authors accountable for not discussing viable alternatives to Microsoft Windows, especially when discussing malware. To say "there is not yet a solution" and that only "traditional advice still applies" is bordering on irresponsibility.

I have written more extensively on this on my own blog: http://marcelbrown.com/2014/11/14/single-important-technology-shift-can-make-2015/
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