In this article we will discuss:
- What is ransomware?
- How ransomware works
- 6 ways to avoid ransomware attacks
Hackers have found out that there are industries such as the medical field that spend a minuscule percentage of their budget on IT security.
With this information, they directed a coordinated attack on not one, but a group of medical facilities, bringing entire hospitals to their knees.
These vicious attacks left patients at risk of ill-care or worse, more tragic results.
Hospitals were left scrambling for fax machines to transfer information without the risk of hacking.
Doctors and nurses went back to manual transcription and transfer of information just like their predecessors 500 years ago.
The software attack by hackers used in these cases is called ransomware.
Their objective is to gain access to computer systems and all its data, and lock owners out, until they pay a ransom, hence the name “ransomware.”
Here at ITS, we are trained to detect and prevent these attacks and all the damages it causes, to all our clients.
It is what we do 24/7, and we stay on top of ransomware trends to make sure that hackers are unable to access our clients’ systems.
In this article, we’d like to give you basic information about ransomware and more importantly, what to do to prevent them.
What is ransomware?
For your device to function again, ransomware is malicious software that infects your computer and shows messages requesting a fee to be charged.
This type of malware is a criminal money-making scheme that can be installed in an email address, instant message, or website via misleading links.
How it works
Hackers can encrypt your systems, your file server, your website, your payment systems, everything on a machine, make it useless, take down your business operations, and then warn you of payment requests to get you back up and running.
That's what ransomware is—asking for ransom for bad stuff they've done to your computers. This is how they're paid.
ITS recommends six main ways to avoid ransomware attacks.
1.Secure your computer
The first move is to make sure your information is safe. This comes from simple protocols, such as the use of a secure password and the encryption of hard drive files. Using a 2FA technique while logging in is another effective way to protect your device and the documents inside.
The 2FA or authentication of two factors is a mechanism that adds a secondary login if you want something important to access. This secondary login is there to ensure that, while getting scammers out, it is actually the person who is allowed to get access.
2FA is a simple way to guarantee a security boost that most hackers would not bother trying to get around.
Always note that the simplest targets they can identify, are hunted by attackers. By adding 2FA, simply taking away brute force entry attempts will make it too difficult for you to follow a target.
A little protection when it comes to malicious programs can go a long way.
2.Use privacy software when using public wifi
A simple way to expose yourself to various methods of attack is to use public WiFi. Keeping your connection private is crucial and not allowing potential attackers to sneak into your network.
To create a safe connection, we suggest using some form of VPN. This will help block your IP address and allow you access to the internet via a secure tunnel.
When using WiFi networks that you don't trust, security software such as a VPN should be the standard protocol.
3.Learn about phishing techniques
Ransomware and malware programs normally get into your computer through phishing tactics. Cybercriminals use either social engineering or complex applications to trick you into giving away data or entering your password into a malicious application.
Reading about phishing techniques and what to look for will cause you to unintentionally become a target. You may research common techniques online or partner with security experts to have comprehensive cybersecurity training.
4.Backup your data
Attackers, even if you do all right, can still be effective.
Malware is still changing and it is possible for someone to become a target. This is why you ought to have a plan for a disaster.
Backing up and encrypting sensitive data before ransomware gets in will help you recover.
A cyber attacker can be able to access and freeze your files, but to assist with data recovery, you can rely on the backup.
This does not necessarily suggest you're out of the woods. You are also going to have to consult with a security specialist to ensure that the software is correctly disabled, data backup will help you reduce the risk of ransomware effect with business continuity.
5. Stay ahead of the curve
The world of ransomware continues to evolve.
This just shows how one thing can change the entire landscape of cybersecurity.
Following ransomware operator-related threats and patterns will give you a way to stay ahead of cyber attacks and keep your sensitive data secure.
6.Work with a good IT team
For any company, it is also a good idea to have a robust security infrastructure that stops attacks in their tracks.
Working with an experienced managed services provider who knows how to defend against common threats is a perfect way to improve the exposure of your organization to cybercrime.
- Under Attack! Understanding Black Market Ransomware
- 6 Ways To Avoid Ransomware Attacks
- 57% Of IT Managers Would Pay Off Ransomware. Would You?
One of the main challenges in the tech world is ransomware.
Since the advent of the personal computer, ransomware attacks have evolved in both scale and complexity.
Such types of attacks are something that everyone is vulnerable to, but that doesn't guarantee that the next target has to be you.
It can be difficult on your own to get your company totally stable.
That's why partnering with a safety team to stop a major danger is always wise.
A good service provider of managed-IT services will help you identify the weak points in your network and provide basic protection.
If you are interested in learning about how our excellent controlled IT services will help protect you from ransomware, send us a call.