Information Technology Services will offer a cyber security awareness program for faculty, staff and students this fall.The program will inform the Brock community about the risks of being connected and teach safe practices to keep all of our systems and data as safe as possible after a nasty threat that resurfaced across the Internet this past week called Ransomware.Ransomware is a form of malware that encrypts files on an infected computer, including shared drives, and demands payment to decrypt them. There is no known way to decrypt these files once they are encrypted except to make the payment, which Brock University is strongly against.This type of infection is very disruptive and in some cases results in loss of data if backups are not being performed on a daily basis by the end user.??Ransomware is typically spread through email attachments, but can also be spread by visiting a malicious or hacked website that will try to exploit outdated browser plugins.The best way to avoid infection is to not open any attachments in emails from?unknown sources. Also avoid attachments from known sources that seem suspicious?and be careful of the websites visited.Keeping your systems up to date with security patches and staying current with your antivirus/malware protection software will also help protect your systems and data.If you suspect that your computer has been infected please turn the? computer off immediately and call the ITS Help Desk at ext. 4357.Recovering from a Ransomware infection depends on how quickly the infection is detected, how promptly the computer is powered off and whether a backup of your data is being done on a regular schedule.For more information on backing up your data please contact the ITS Help Desk.Information the Brock University cyber security awareness program will be posted as it becomes available.