Cyber security experts warn of ransomware dangers in 2017
Elizabeth Hopkins | January 02, 2017
BOSTON - Cyber experts say in 2017, the most likely victims of a stick-up won't be staring down the barrel of a gun; rather, they’ll be staring into a computer screen. “Literally, here's what you need to do to pay me. Here's a list of businesses that haven't paid me in the past and bad things happened, and here's a list of people that did,” said IBM threat intelligence expert Caleb Barlow. "Eighty percent of what you hear about with cybercrime is actually organized criminal gangs. And one of their new tactics is something called ransomware." It’s a way for thieves to hold your personal information hostage until you pay them. It appears in your inbox with an innocent-looking email. But when you click it, thieves access your phone, or computer or gaming system, and hold hostage pictures, banking information, personal and business files until you pay up. “In recent weeks and months, we've seen it impact hospitals, major businesses, individuals and even police departments here in the commonwealth of Massachusetts.