Ransomware is one of the most common cyber attacks used today. To learn more about ransomware, including a few tips on how to stay protected, read this blog and watch our video.
We just recently posted a video on YouTube that features one of our IT professionals, Mike. Each week, Atlantic IT shares a valuable video to help organizations make better use of their IT systems. Additionally, these videos are aimed at helping you build protection against cyber attacks while also staying ahead of the technology curve.
This week, our topic involves something that our clients frequently ask about: ransomware. Many of them are confused about what it is and how to protect their organization from a harmful ransomware infection.
What is Ransomware?
According to CybersecurityVentures.com, ransomware caused an estimated $11.5 billion in global damages in 2019.
Ransomware is malicious software that’s developed to infiltrate computer systems and block access to them. To regain access to these systems, a lump sum of money is to be paid to the cyberattacker. Ransomeware will encrypt your files, folders, databases, and other information on your systems or network until the ransom is paid. Once the ransom is paid, the encryption code, in theory, is then sent to the organization to re-access their systems or networks.
How Does the Payment Work?
Merely handing overpayment for ransom isn’t always easy. On many occasions, the cyber attacker will demand payment in Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency. This is done so authorities can’t track the cybercriminal.
Who is Attacked?
All businesses that use a computer system or network are targets for ransomware attacks. From large enterprises to small startups, ransomware is a very serious threat in the world we live in today.
Steps for Protection
Although ransomware attacks can happen to even the most well-protected systems, there are some tips to lower the chances of experiencing one of these detrimental attacks. Take a look at our trusted tips below:
Have a Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plan
The first step to build up your defenses involves ensuring that you have a reliable business continuity and disaster recovery plan in place. What does that mean? This includes measures to ensure that backups are completed every single day–both on-site and in the cloud.
Invest in the Best Defenses
The next step is to invest in the right kind of protection products. This includes investing in:
- Anti-virus software
- Anti-malware software
- DNS filtering
- Business-grade firewalls
- And more
Be Wary of Email Attachments
Email attachments are one of the leading ways cyber attackers can infiltrate our systems and networks. That being said, you want to be educated on what emails you can open and the dangers to look out for. One tip we have is to never click or open an email attachment without confirming the authenticity of the sender. One rule of thumb is never to open something you’re not expecting. Also, remember always to delete anything that’s suspicious.
Participate in Routine Training
Cybersecurity technology and best practices are constantly changing. That being said, another key tip is to participate in cybersecurity awareness training constantly. These training sessions are aimed at providing insights and knowledge to your team about the dangers out there, including ways for everyone to stay protected. According to Mike, “This will keep your organization ahead of the curve and in the know.”
Work with an Experienced IT Service Company
The last step is to ensure that your IT service company knows what they’re doing. There are many IT companies out there that claim to be cybersecurity experts, but they may not have the reputation or qualifications you’d expect. That being said, do your research before choosing a provider and signing an agreement.
This is Only the Beginning
While we’ve provided many great tips above, there are many other strategies aimed at keeping you and your organization protected against cyber attacks, including ransomware.
Have questions? We would love to sit down with you to discuss how to best protect your computer systems, networks, and valuable data found within your organization.
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