A small sheriff's office in Arkansas was infected in 2016. You would have thought law enforcement in the United States would be more secure but then again, the NHS was hit in 2017 by WannaCry. Ransomware is not a new concept and has been around for a decade or more. It is only in the last three years that it has become more advanced. Email, web and USB (though rare) is the entry method, and even global American investment firms get infected monthly!

Many other sheriffs’ departments outside of Arkansas have been hit, along with many public sector departments globally, as well as private firms, and even home users. Companies of all sizes, locations and types get ransomware infections weekly. In the end, the good guys (law enforcement) paid the ransom of three bitcoins, which at the time was only $2,400 (now around $20,000!) and they got their data back swiftly. Pretty embarrassing for the cops to pay the bad guys! Though in this case, they likely had no "choice".

So what are the lessons to be learnt? Backup your data frequently and ensure ransomware cannot overwrite backups. Then roll out multi-aspect and multi-layered defences. Specialist anti-malware software on tablets, smartphones, desktops, servers and laptops. Stop malware at the edge - web and emails.