A scheme which enables victims of ransomware to decrypt their files and data for free is now offering even more decryption tools thanks to new partners pledging to help take the fight to cybercriminals.
Launched by Europol, the Dutch National Police, Intel Security, and Kaspersky Lab in July this year, the No More Ransom initiative provides keys to unlocking encrypted files, as well as information on how to avoid getting infected in the first place.
The website initially launched with four tools for unlocking different types of ransomware, including the notorious CryptXXX. During its first two months, No More Ransom helped 2,500 people rescue their data, depriving cybercriminals of more than €1.35 million in ransom.
Now thirty new partners are joining the scheme, offering new possibilities to the victims of ransomware with a decryption tools for a wider array of the different variants of the malicious file-locking software.
Cybersecurity firms Bitdefender, Check Point, Emsisoft and Trend Micro have all joined the No More Ransom project, adding 32 new decryption tools for ransomware variants including Globe 2 -the ransomware which recently took a whole UK hospital group offline - Stampedo, FenixLocker and more.
Initially only available in English, the No More Ransom portal is now available in Dutch, French, Italian, Portuguese and Russian in order to better assist victims of ransomware across the globe. Translations into other languages are currently ongoing, but Europol say their implantation will follow "very soon".
New supporting partners of the scheme include a variety of private companies from across Europe, as well as eu-LISA - European Agency for the operational management of Large-Scale IT Systems in the area of freedom, security and justice - and the Austrian, Croatian, Danish, Finnish, Maltese, Romanian, Singaporean and Slovenian police. The total of countries involved with No More Ransom now stands at 22.
No More Ransom recommends protection measures such as regularly backing up systems so ransomware can't destroy personal data, using robust security software and warns PC users not to trust any suspicious-looking links in messages.
Ransomware has boomed during 2016, with the cost of ransomware attacks expected to amount to more than $1 billion by the end of the year.
Read more on cybercrime
- Why ransomware is exploding, and how your company can protect itself
- How to avoid ransomware attacks: 10 tips [TechRepublic]
- How Bitcoin helped fuel an explosion in ransomware attacks
- Europol, Intel and Kaspersky team up to crack down on ransomware [CNET]
- Remove ransomware infections from your PC using these free tools