Under Attack: How to Protect Your Business From Ransomware
Ransomware is a serious problem for businesses of all sizes. It is malicious software that encrypts data and demands money, often cryptocurrency, to unlock it. Ransomware attacks are rising, making it increasingly important for companies to understand how to protect themselves from this threat. This blog post will discuss the risks posed by ransomware, how to detect and prevent an attack, tips for responding if your business is targeted, and how to protect your business from ransomware. We hope this information helps you protect your business and its data from the devastating effects of a ransomware attack.
What is Ransomware?
Ransomware is malicious software that holds data hostage until a ransom is paid. Typically, the malware encrypts files on a computer or network, preventing access to the data. The attacker then demands payment for the decryption key in order to restore access to the data. Ransomware is often spread through phishing emails, malicious websites, and other vectors. And once your computer systems have been attacked, it’s too late for protection. This is why it is important to look for ways to protect your business from ransomware before the attacks can occur.
Types of Ransomware
To help you better protect your business from ransomware, it is essential to understand the different types of ransomware out there.
There are two main types: file-encrypting ransomware and locker ransomware. File-encrypting ransomware encrypts files on a computer or network, preventing access until the ransom is paid. Locker ransomware targets entire systems by locking users out of their computers and denying access to data until the ransom is paid. This type of ransomware is especially dangerous, as it can prevent users from logging in to the system.
Ways to Protect Your Business From Ransomware
The most effective way to protect your business from ransomware is to take a proactive approach. Taking the following steps can help reduce the risk of becoming a victim of ransomware:
Install an Antivirus Firewall
Selecting a firewall to protect against ransomware is of the utmost importance, though it can be arduous. Many firewalls exist on the market, yet none are infallible; however, they will certainly improve your safety if you decide to purchase one. Consider which firewall aligns with your budget and network use before shifting focus towards educating staff in IT security protocols.
Backup EVERYTHING Frequently
By backing up all your data daily, you can be certain that the information that has been locked or corrupted by an attacker is safe and secure on another server – completely out of reach to them. However, it’s essential to understand how to back up your data properly for this plan of action to work efficiently; ransomware attackers have been known to breach systems through desktops before gaining access to networks. This means to protect your business from ransomware, you must store it in the cloud or an offline local storage device that isn’t connected to your system. If opting for a hard drive solution, plug it in only when backing up and disconnect it immediately after each session.
Develop a Disaster Recovery Plan
Its essential to have a disaster recovery plan in place ahead of an attack. It should include protocols for identifying, responding to, and recovering from ransomware. It should also cover the steps needed to restore data and any other measures that need to be taken to ensure business continuity. Some steps you may want to include in your disaster recovery plan include,
- Shut down most of the organization’s network immediately to prevent infection from spreading.
- Shut down Wi-Fi and Bluetooth right away.
- Alert your local authorities and the FBI
- Either pay the ransom to get your files back, or don’t pay the ransom and delete all the infected files and restore the new ones using your backup.
These steps and more would be laid out in a comprehensive DRP that every employee would be able to access for quick action during an emergency.
Train Your Employees
Employees are the first line of defense against ransomware attacks, so educating them on how to detect and prevent threats is important. Teach your employees about common signs of a phishing attack and recommended best practices for avoiding risky behavior online. You can also provide them with resources such as security awareness training courses.
Invest in Security Awareness Training
Hackers use the “human element” more than any other factor to access your data. Your employees are intelligent and capable; however, they might not take IT security as seriously as you do. Investing in security awareness training can help develop a culture of mindful workers who can identify suspicious links, phishing emails, and risky behavior on the web.
Whitelist Computer Applications
Blacklisting prevents the installation of a single piece of software, while whitelisting allows for only certain programs and websites – prohibiting all other installations or visits. When it comes to computers, you must initially scan them to recognize authentic applications, then configure these machines so they won’t allow any further downloads. On the web, by adding an ad-blocker and a script-blocker, you can filter ads and java/flash applications while permitting access only on sites deemed appropriate and secure.
Screen Your Emails and Don’t Click Strange Links or Ads
Safeguarding yourself against phishing is one of the most effective ways to stop a ransomware attack since it’s usually spread through emails. Malvertising, or harmful links camouflaged in ads, is another common way you can get hit with ransomware. To thwart these malicious attempts from gaining access to your system, be on alert for business email compromise schemes and abstain from clicking on any suspicious advertisements. Stay vigilant at all times!
Apply Security Patches to Your Applications
Cybercriminals try to exploit weaknesses within your third-party applications and plugins to break into your computers. That’s why it is vital to patch these programs regularly, shielding them from digital intrusions through their vulnerable areas. You must stay up-to-date with updates for Java, Flash, Adobe, and the like so they remain impenetrable against malicious hackers!
Protect Your Business From Ransomware With The Help of Businets
If you want to protect your business from ransomware, make sure that your disaster recovery plan is correct, that your firewall is top-of-the-line, and that your employees are well-trained to avoid getting phished in the first place, then you should consider working with a proven IT security company. A successful IT security company will help you find the solutions that match your budget and requirements – ensuring you pay for the correct amount of security you need.
Our team at Businets Inc. is experienced in helping organizations develop and maintain secure IT infrastructure. We provide a wide range of services, from managed security services and cybersecurity consulting to cloud security solutions and more. Contact us today to learn how we can help protect your business from ransomware attacks!