TeslaCrypt: Evildoer for your computer games

Talk about anything- your doc files, images, audios, videos, portals, database, source codes, etc., Nothing is spared by Ransomware. Within this specific family of Ransomware – Cryptovirus – distinct malware programs have been developed to specifically target files. TeslaCrypt is no different. It was first seen in early 2015 and attacked computer games. However, a master decryption key for anyone who has been infected with TeslaCrypt is available now.

This might be the end of the road for TeslaCrypt but definitely is no so for its creators.

Gamers’ Nightmare

Just like other malware, TeslaCrypt typically diffused the bug via emails. It attached infectious JavaScript file and a downloader in Zip file. As soon as the victim clicked on the attachment, it downloaded the payload to the Windows Script Host and encrypted files.

It could successfully pollute various games including Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Minecraft, and World of Tanks. Initial targets were player profiles, custom maps, game modules and recorded games. Later on, it also started encrypting JPEG, PDF and word files.

The early versions of TeslaCrypt held certain vulnerabilities and gave way to security researchers to develop decryption tool for it. These flaws were later fixed and early this year, criminals circulated robust a program.

The Invasion

Although a lookalike of CryptoLocker, TeslaCrypt didn’t share any code with CryptoLocker and was an independent malware. It started by infecting 40 distinct computer games with around 185 different file extensions. As soon as the attacks were complete, it would display a HTML file and demand ransom worth $500 in Bitcoin. Failing to paying ransom in the stated time resulted in doubling up the amount.

Master Key or Masterstroke?

The makers of TeslaCrypt released a free master decryption key earlier this year. The victims were invited to download it and decrypt all files affected with TeslaCrypt free of charge.

This is quite baffling. This was probably the first instance of hackers providing a master decryption key to the public. This could well be the calm before the storm. It’s like gaining trust before slaughtering someone! The masterminds behind Teslacrypt are probably onto their next big Ransomware strain.

So what can you do to be safe?

Back up your files with a trustworthy online service provider. Creating backup of files has been considered as the best practice to protect yourself against Ransomware. It ensures that you always have a safe storage and can retrieve back your files anytime, anywhere. In addition, avoid clicking suspicious attachment in emails. Remember, emails are one of the most common carriers of Ransomware

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