Ransomware: Explanation & Prevention

Ransomware Defined:  

Ransomware is a form of malware that encrypts files on a device. The cyber attacker then demands a ransom from the victim in exchange for decryption. 

How Ransomware Works: 

There are many ways your computer can become infected with ransomware. The most common way however is through phishing

In other words, a user in your company receives an email with a link or attachment. When the unsuspecting user clicks on the malicious link/file the corrupt program is activated and silently spreads through the victim’s computer, files, and spreads to every machine in the network. The ransomware then crypto locks every file that it has corrupted. The cyber attacker will then ask for payment with a promise to send you the key to unlock your files as soon as they receive their money. This “promise” by the hacker is just that, there is no guarantee that they will ever unlock your data. And on top of all that, there is no way to track your payment to catch the cybercriminal because they will require you to pay them in crypto currency.  

Ransomware Reality: 

Ransomware is scary and a very serious threat. Just because you might be a small business doesn’t mean this won’t happen to you.  The only way to avoid ransomware is to take protective measures. If you are unprepared and get attacked there is very little you can do get your files unlocked and your data back. 

How To Protect Your Business

It’s always better to prevent a ransomware infection from happening in the first place than to have to restore your backups in response to an infection that has already occurred. This is why we highly recommend implementing Backup Solutions, Employee Training, and Cyber Security Solutions as part of your business plan. 

  1. Backup Solutions 
    – Backups are the only thing that can save an organization’s data after a ransomware attack. You need to have offline backups AND cloud backups.  
    – Offline Backups are especially important because ransomware cannot touch a backup that is disconnected from the system. Having an offline backup copy of your files and date acts as a stopgap. 
  2. Employee Training 
    – End user training is essential to protecting your business. The best way to prevent a ransomware attack is to make sure no malicious links or attachments are clicked in the first place.  
    – We offer training systems for your employees so they can be aware of cyber attacks and learn how to recognize malicious emails.  
  3. Cyber Security Solutions 
    – We also offer comprehensive email protection solutions which can help against spam, viruses, spoofing, phishing, and spyware attacks.

Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns about Ransomware or other cyber threats.