Disable files running from AppData...

Often malware executable files are run from the App Data, Local App Data or Temporary folders. They are even run from unzipping utilities. You can disable files running from these locations within Windows, or with Intrusion Prevention Software, such as the Cryptolocker Prevention Kit.

Ransomware and malware often affect a computer by arriving as an email with an attachment that is named with the extension .PDF or .EXE. It relies on the default behaviour of hiding known file-extensions. If you re-enable the ability to see the full file-extension, it can be easier to spot suspicious files before you open them. You may even wish to deny emails sent with .EXE files, or to deny emails sent with files that have two file extensions, the last one being executable (*.*.EXE files, in filter-speak). View emails in preview mode or better still browse emails and download files with SmartScreen Filter or similar.

Don’t just rely on anti-virus. It is always a good idea to have both anti-malware and anti-virus software. Malware authors frequently send out new variants to try to avoid detection. So it is important to have both layers of protection and ensure they are always up to date. Before deciding which to use check out the latest reviews.

It goes without saying that a full and incremental back up is still the best way to protect your data. Cloud back up combined with external drives and/or back up servers gives the best protection. Portable hard drives run at slower revolution speeds and are designed to take more shock. So they may be better for an external back up, as opposed to larger hard drives. Remember that if you get infected with ransomware or malware, this will also affect mapped drives. It is very difficult to remove malware, so you are best to identify any problems quickly, replace or format infected hard drives and restore from un-infected back ups.