Host Ransomware Prevention

Threat Detection and Response Host Sensors include Host Ransomware Prevention (HRP), which can identify and quarantine a file or process with malicious behavior that is characteristic of ransomware.

A user with Administrator credentials can configure Host Ransomware Prevention mode in the global Host Sensor settings. A user with Operator credentials can configure Host Sensor settings for a group.

HRP Modes

You can enable Host Ransomware Prevention in one of two modes:

  • Detect — Host Sensors find processes and files with characteristics of ransomware and sends reports about them to your Threat Detection and Response account for manual intervention.
  • Prevent — Host Sensors detect, automatically end processes, and place files with characteristics of ransomware in quarantine before the ransomware encrypts files. Host Sensors send reports about this activity to your Threat Detection and Response account as an indicator that is already mitigated. If the Host Sensor cannot successfully complete the HRP Prevent action, this information is also sent to your TDR account for manual intervention.

When you enable HRP in Detect or Prevent mode, to assist in the detection of ransomware, the Host Sensor creates hidden folders and files on the endpoint. If the user deletes the hidden files, the Host Sensor creates them again the next time it starts.

HRP Actions and Threat Scores

When HRP is configured in Prevent mode, the Host Sensor attempts to take immediate action to kill and quarantine ransomware before it can execute and encrypt files. This action occurs immediately, even if the Host Sensor cannot connect to your TDR account or the Internet.

The next time the Host Sensor connects to your TDR account, it sends a report of the HRP event and information about any actions it took. ThreatSync creates an indicator for the HRP event and assigns a Threat Score.

In Prevent mode:

  • If the Host Sensor remediation action succeeded, the HRP incident is assigned a Threat Score of 1 (Remediated)
  • If the Host Sensor remediation action failed, the HRP incident is assigned a Threat Score of 10 (Critical)

In Detect mode, all HRP incidents are assigned a Threat Score of 7 (High).

HRP Actions and the Whitelist

To prevent ransomware, the Host Sensor takes immediate action to kill the process, even before it sends the MD5 to TDR for analysis. This means that if you add the MD5 of a file to the Whitelist, the Host Sensor will still kill the process if it is detected as ransomware.

If you want the Host Sensor to ignore a file, even if it has the characteristics of ransomware, you can add an Exclusion for the directory location. The Host Sensor gets the exclusion list when it starts up, and when the exclusion list is updated. For more information, see Configure TDR Exclusions.

See Also

About TDR Threat Scores

Configure TDR Host Sensor Settings

Manage TDR Groups

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