Key Difference – Scareware vs Ransomware
The key difference between scareware and ransomware is that the scareware will download malware that will be used to steal data whereas ransomware is used to encrypt and lock away your data for a ransom amount that is demanded in currency like bitcoins. Scammers use a range of tricks to try and part internet users from hard earn cash and personal information. Scareware and ransomware are used for such purposes. However, one of these is more serious than the other. Let’s take a closer look at both software to see how they threaten users.
What is Scareware?
Scareware is mainly used for deception. It is also known as a rogue scanner. The main purpose of this software is to frighten people into purchasing or installing the software. In the same manner of a trojan software, scareware is used to deceive users into double-clicking and installing the product. Scam tactics like displaying frightening screens are used to show you that your computer is under attack. Scareware uses fake versions of system problem messages and virus alerts. These screens are fake and will fool most people. After these displays, the scareware would claim itself to be an antivirus as a solution for the computer attack.
Rouge scanner and scareware have become a part of a multibillion-dollar scam business. A person can be scammed into buying scareware because of a bogus virus attack displayed on his screen. Thousands of user fall for these scams each month. They make use of people’s fear and lack of technical knowledge.
Scareware can also invade your computer in the attempt of recording keystrokes of personal and banking information. Scareware can attempt to remotely control your computer to make it serve as a spam-sending robot.
How to Avoid Scareware
Being skeptical and vigilant can help you to avoid online scams. Always question free offers whenever a window appears to ask you to download and install. Using a legitimate antivirus product will also help you to avoid scareware. Reading email in plain text will also help. Although reading in such a manner is not cosmetically pleasing with all the graphics removed, it will help display suspicious links.
Also, avoid opening file attachments from strangers. Do not open suspicious software services. Distrust any email offers that come with attachments since these emails will usually contain spam. You should delete such messages before they infect the computer. Be ready to close your browser and be skeptical regarding online offers. If you suspect of any sense of alarm, pressing the alt and F4 button will close your browser and stop any scareware from being downloaded.
What is Ransomware?
Ransomware uses a malicious code that is used by criminals to launch lock screen and data kidnapping attacks. The motive for such attacks is monetary, unlike other attacks. The victim will be notified of the exploit and will be given instructions on how to recover from the attack. Payment will be demanded in the form of virtual currency to protect the identity of the criminal.
Ransomware malware can spread through email attachments, infected external storage, infected software and compromised websites. With a lock screen attack, the credentials of the victim may be changed on the computer device. In the kidnapping attack, malware will be used to encrypt files on the infected device and the connected network devices. Ransomware kits that are available on the deep web have enabled criminals with little or no technical knowledge to purchase ransomware programs and launch attacks with very little effort. Attackers will use these methods to extort digital currency and export digital data to their victims.
The victims will receive a pop-up screen or email warning that the private key that is required to unlock the device or decrypt the files will be destroyed if the ransom is not paid. The victim may also be fooled into thinking he is a subject of an official inquiry. The victim will be informed that illegal web or unlicensed software is found on the victim’s computer. This will be followed by instruction on how to pay an electronic fine.
How to Protect from Ransomware
To protect yourself from attacks like ransomware and cyber extortion, experts urge to update software like antivirus on a regular basis, and backup your computer. End-users should take precaution when clicking on emails from strangers and opening attachments.
Ransomware attacks cannot be avoided completely. There are important measures that can be taken by individuals and organizations to minimize the damage and recover quickly. Strategies like keeping storage snapshots outside of the main storage pool, enforce hard limits, and compartment authentication systems will help.
What is the difference between Scareware and Ransomware?
Scareware vs Ransomware
|Scareware steals your data.||Ransomware locks your computer and encrypts your personal data for ransom.|
|Since this is a scam, your computer is safe.||This is unsafe with various degrees of seriousness.|
|Recovery includes running a full scan with an updated antivirus software.||Recovery includes restoring the PC.|
|The user should immediately close the browser.||The user should restore the PC to gain access.|
|This displays windows- style popups.||This displays a software.|
|Effect on the Computer|
|This downloads malware to your computer.||This locks your computer and makes it unusable.|
Summary – Scareware vs Ransomware
Scareware and ransomware are two ways of exploiting internet users. The difference between scareware and ransomware depends on the type of attacks they use; scareware steals your data whereas ransomware locks your computer and encrypt your personal data for ransom. To be safe from the above attacks, keep away from suspicious sites, do not download torrent files or open up suspicious emails.