7 First-In-Class Ransomware Protection Tools in 2021
Ransomware is a well-known enemy of the corporate world, where it achieved to make damages worth millions of dollars. Thanks to its ability to cipher your data using the most advanced encryption algorithms, you’re almost never able to retrieve it without purchasing the key or paying a ransom.
What to do then?
One of the best ways to prevent the attack from stealing your data is purchasing the best ransomware protection program that will make sure your sensitive information remains safe. Paying a ransom is never a good idea because it won’t guarantee that the hackers will give you back your data – therefore, consider some of the following ransomware protection software solutions that will prevent any damage.
What is Ransomware?
Although ransomware is primarily aimed at large companies that contain tons of classified and valuable information, home users can become victims, as well.
Ransomware is a kind of malware that threatens to publish a user’s data or lock their systems until the ransom is paid. Hackers often require you to pay in bitcoin, which is an untraceable payment method.
The most common way of locking the data involves encryption, which makes a victim’s data inaccessible. It usually enters the system through email attachments and legitimate programs used to trick a user into downloading or opening them. The most famous examples include:
- BadRabbit is one of the latest ransomware types targeted at large organizations in Russia, Ukraine, and the United States. It demands you to pay the ransom within 40 hours before the price goes up.
- CryptoLocker utilizes a Trojan horse malware to infect your computer and search for files to encrypt. It’s no longer in wide distribution, but other types of ransomware are at the cutting edge.
- Fusob is the most popular mobile ransomware, which requires you to pay $100-$200 unless you want to face certain federal charges. It usually comes in the form of a pornographic video player, requiring payment using iTunes gift cards. It does nothing if your device uses Russian or another Eastern European language.
- Petya was discovered in 2016, and its goal was to infect Windows-based systems, preventing them from booting until the ransom is paid.
- Reveton began to spread in 2012 when companies started to receive warnings from “law enforcement agencies,” claiming that their computers were used for illegal activities. The “agencies” required payment via a voucher from an anonymous prepaid cash service. Reveton was mostly targeted at European countries.
- SamSam was developed in 2016, and it was targeted at exploiting vulnerabilities in weak servers of the government and healthcare organizations.
- WannaCry spread through the Internet in 2017, using an exploit allegedly leaked from the U.S. National Security Agency. It infected the systems in over 150 countries, employing more than 20 languages for demanding the money from users with bitcoin cryptocurrency.
You should be aware of the fact that new ransomware attacks arise daily, which is why you need up-to-date ransomware protection that will detect the potential strike and prevent it from executing and locking up your system.
Have a look at the following examples of the best ransomware protection software that will provide a safe environment for both home and business users.
1. Acronis Ransomware Protection (from $49.99/year)
Acronis Ransomware Protection is a leader in providing top-notch defense from the latest threats and ransomware attacks. It offers protection for both home (from $49.99/year) and business users (from $99/year), making sure your data gets the best level of end-to-end encryption and security.
- Excellent ransomware protection: Acronis does what it says and provides a user with the latest protection from the most advanced ransomware, including Petya. Recent tests have shown that Acronis caught the malware before it could do any damage.
- Great recovery options: Once the software detects a suspicious file, it will ask you whether you trust the data or want to block If you choose to block it, Acronis will offer to recover any affected files from its local cache. That way, you can prevent permanent data loss.
- Ultimate protection against zero-day ransomware attacks: Zero-day attacks are able to jeopardize your entire system, mainly because they exploit vulnerabilities in the software that developers haven’t detected yet. Luckily, Acronis will beat them successfully.
- No free trial for home users: Acronis True Image 2021 doesn’t offer a free trial, which is inconvenient since the product is a bit pricey. On the other hand, you can try Acronis Cyber Backup for business users and use it 30 days for free.
2. NeuShield Data Sentinel ($39.99-$159.99/year)
NeuShield Data Sentinel comes with Mirror Shielding technology, which adds a layer of protection to your existing antivirus software, allowing you to retrieve your critical files from a ransomware attack. Overall, this ransomware blocker is an excellent option for both home and business users that want to safeguard their critical data.
- First-in-class disk and boot protection: Some ransomware attacks are aimed at encrypting and wiping the whole disk, which is devastating for both home and business users. Still, this program will prevent ransomware from jeopardizing any component of your hard drive and block malware such as Petya or Bad Rabbit.
- Mirror Shielding technology: Thanks to the implementation of the Mirror Shielding technology, your files will be protected with an additional layer of security, which means that no ransomware or a similar program can make any changes to those files.
- One-click restore: This feature uses the System Restore function, which is already built into the system, and makes it possible to restore your system the way it was yesterday, making sure your files and folders stay intact.
- Expensive: If you have more than one workstation to protect, you can expect a steep cost for it – $99.99 for 3 workstations a year and $159.99 for 5 workstations.
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3. Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac (from $29.99/year)
If you’re looking for the best ransomware protection for Mac, check out the macOS-friendly version offered by Bitdefender. Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac is a unique solution that will protect your Apple device from different types of ransomware and block any unauthorized attempt to manipulate files within protected folders.
- Excellent anti-ransomware features: Bitdefender for Mac provides unique anti-ransomware options, which include its immediate detection and block. Besides, it offers backups for ransomware, which are essential for preventing data loss.
- VPN: Bitdefender VPN allows you to encrypt your Internet connection and protect yourself while using the Internet. That way, you can prevent any malware from entering your system and stealing your confidential files.
- Time Machine Protection: This feature is similar to the Mirror Shielding technology we’ve seen at NeuShield Data Sentinel, and Bitdefender has created it specifically for Mac users. It adds a layer of security for system backups and allows you to retrieve your files after a successful ransomware attack.
- Limitations: Despite its numerous features, Bitdefender for Mac is still somehow limited. Namely, it gives you only 200MB of the VPN traffic a day and excludes the options like Anti-Theft and Device Optimizer.
4. Avast Free Ransomware Decryption Tools – Best Free Ransomware Protection
Not all the users are ready to pay a significant amount of money for an anti-ransomware program, which is why we’re presenting you Avast Free Ransomware Decryption Tools. This is the best free ransomware protection that will help you decrypt the files affected by ransomware at no additional cost, which is convenient for home users.
- Detailed descriptions: Avast provides a detailed explanation of how each of the malware programs works, including the messages they send, the filename changes they make, and screenshots of actual attacks. Such details are vital for a user who can learn more about the ransomware’s nature.
- Regular updates: Avast provides frequent updates, which means that new types of ransomware are consistently added to a list. It implies that Avast is working on the prevention of the latest ransomware that is capable of destroying the systems.
- A rich ransomware database: Avast free ransomware protection provides decryption for even 23 types of ransomware, among which are TeslaCrypt, Bart, CrySiS, and more.
- No ransomware detection and prevention: These are just decryption tools, which means that they won’t detect and prevent the ransomware attack but fix the damage it has already made. Therefore, you need to purchase programs that protect against ransomware.
5. Trend Micro RansomBuster (Free)
Trend Micro RansomBuster is one of the best free anti ransomware programs that will safeguard your files and prevent them from being exposed to hackers. It’s a full package software that provides all its features at no cost, making sure any unauthorized access to your data is detected and blocked.
- Folder Shield: This is a feature that blocks any unauthorized access to your documents and attempts to modify them. Once Folder Shield detects unauthorized access, it will give you the option to prevent it or put it to the trusted list.
- Ultimate file recovery: In case ransomware achieves to encrypt your files, RansomBuster will recover them successfully.
- Easy to use: You won’t have any troubles while installing and using this tool, which is convenient for home users that don’t want to bother with complex programs.
- Needs improvements: Recent tests have shown that RansomBuster failed to detect 4 out of 10 ransomware examples, which means that it needs specific improvements.
6. Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware ($29.99/year)
Malwarebytes Anti-Ransomware is another product that’s convenient for home users. It’s lightweight and easy to install, and the features it brings are decent, considering that it’s inexpensive. There is also a free version of the product, which brings a 14-day trial of the Premium package.
- Blocks exploit attacks: Malwarebytes makes sure vulnerable systems and software are safe from zero-day attacks that can jeopardize a user’s safety.
- Blocks access to untrusted websites: This program will prevent you from accessing sites that might contain malicious code.
- 24/7 protection: Malwarebytes provides real-time security from different kinds of ransomware, making sure no threat executes in your system.
- Fails to detect ransomware on time: Certain tests had shown that Malwarebytes was unable to detect ransomware before it made changes to a user’s system.
7. Check Point ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware ($39.95/year)
ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware, provided by Check Point, has proven its efficiency in providing protection against the most sophisticated cyberattacks. Apart from being available to PCs and mobiles, ZoneAlarm is also offered to business users who want to secure their workstations from the latest kinds of ransomware and other cyber threats.
- Great real-world ransomware protection: According to some tests, ZoneAlarm Anti-Ransomware successfully detected even the most advanced ransomware and achieved to block it before it made any changes.
- Straightforward user interface: The program is easy to install and use. Most importantly, it won’t require any logs or show notifications until ransomware is detected. That said, you can work on your device without being bothered by frequent pop-ups.
- PC Shield: Similar to some of the features found in other software we have seen, PC Shield blocks malicious attempts to lock your PC and encrypt your data. That way, you’ll be able to access your data at any time.
- No free version available: Unlike most of its competitors, who offer a free version of their products, ZoneAlarm doesn’t have one. Still, there is a free trial you can download without providing your credit card information.
Verdict: How to Protect Against Ransomware?
The most efficient way to protect from ransomware and other potentially dangerous malware and viruses is to be careful when downloading the files and opening email attachments.
Most malicious files that can jeopardize the system come from the Internet, in the form of legitimate programs that don’t seem like a threat. Therefore, never open the files that come from untrusted sources or email senders that look shady.
Still, even if you’re precautious, you shouldn’t risk and go unprotected. Always consider installing an anti-ransomware tool that will help you detect, block, and even retrieve your data that’s been taken and locked by hackers.