Crimeware is a set of programs or any computer program that has been designed to facilitate illegal activity online. Many spyware programs, keyloggers, and browser hijackers can be considered crimeware, although only those used illicitly. The phishing kit is one common type of crimeware that is a collection of tools assembled to make it easier for people with minimal technical skills to launch a phishing exploit. Typically, a phishing kit includes website development software, complete with graphics, coding, and content that can be used to produce convincing imitations of authorized sites, and spamming software to automate the mass mailing process. Phishing kits and several other types of crimeware are readily available on the Internet.
To fight against such crimeware attacks and even prevent such attacks in the future, you will have to employ efficient virus protection and virus removal strategies like installing a good antivirus software. A firewall along with antivirus for virus protection is treated to be the first line of defense that will protect your device from crimeware attacks. Ensure that the built-in firewall is always enabled and configured correctly. Firewall blocks suspicious programs and hence provides all the security you need to protect yourself from crimeware.
Criminals use a wide range of methods to steal information through crimeware, including:
- Stealing passwords cached on a user’s system.
- Installing keystroke loggers to gather data, such as login and password information for online bank accounts.
- Redirecting a user’s Web browser to a counterfeit website controlled by the thief.
- Enabling remote access of applications, permitting criminals to break into networks.
Harmful Effects Caused by Crimeware
- Identity Theft
- Intrusion of Privacy
- Annoying Pop-ups
- Private Data Theft
- Loss of productivity because of operating system errors, system slowdowns, etc.
- Saturation with unwanted advertising: pop-up windows, spam, etc.
- Financial losses because of the theft of passwords for accessing online services.
- Legal problems via the usage of the compromised computer by third parties for illicit activities.
You will have to be worried about crimeware because of the following harmful effects:
The victims of crimeware could be both businesses and consumers. In fact, any company or person with an Internet connection, regardless of their business sector, characteristics or interests, could be attacked at any time. One of the most concerning aspects about this new scenario refers precisely to the fact that crimeware has been designed to silently compromise systems. Furthermore, the very fact that these are customized attacks makes it incredibly complicated for conventional antivirus solutions to detect them. Very often these attacks are not reported because of a sense of defenselessness or in order to prevent negative publicity.
How can I prevent these crimeware attacks?
Information as a defensive strategy
Information is always treated to be one of the first lines of defense. Always keep yourself updated with news related to crimeware and its different methods by visiting reliable security information websites.
IT security tools
Installing a security solution is considered to be one of the best ways used for protecting yourself against crimeware. This security solution will need to have the following features:
- Proactive technologies to detect unknown malware by examining its behavior (HIPS, Host-based Intrusion Prevention System).
- Vulnerabilities and security patches Download and utilize security patches for vulnerabilities in the applications that you have installed. You can get these patches from each developer’s website.
Ensure to act with caution by
- Not downloading programs from doubtful Internet sites
- Ensuring that any programs you download are certified by an editorial group, public organization, or antivirus company.
- Scanning all emails received with your antivirus software, even if you assume you know the sender.
- Paying careful attention to any signs of peculiar behavior in your computer. This could refer to unusual warnings from Windows, emails from unknown sources or in different languages,increase in file sizes, etc.