On May 12, 2017, a strain of ransomware called WannaCry infected over 300,000 Windows PCs around the globe, making it the largest cyberattack in history. Ransomware differs from typical malware in that the perpetrators not only encrypt the user’s files, but demand a ransom in order to release them.
Experts suggest calling the authorities and not paying the ransom as it is no guarantee the hackers will follow through and will likely try to extort even more money.
The best course of action is prevention. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Back up your data. Daily backups of network data to the cloud is a secure solution that is easy to implement using data recovery software. In the event your business should become the victim of a ransomware attack, system administrators can access your data and restore operations without further damage or disruption to your business.
- Stay up to date. Vulnerabilities in third-party plugins, operating systems, and applications are an open door to ransomware. Remain diligent about installing updates and patches as they become available to prevent infection, and consider whitelisting software applications running on your system network to prevent the unauthorized installation or running of infected files.
- Unplug. If a ransomware attack should occur, immediately shut down and unplug all the PCs in your system network to prevent further spreading of the virus, including the suspension of all Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities.
- Resist the urge to click. Phishing attacks are a common ploy among hackers, who deliver infected emails to users in the hopes they will click on a link or attachment, allowing the attached malware to infect the computer or network. In addition to emails, malware may be contained within adware or on webpages or links; and while ad blockers may help block malicious ads there is no substitute for education. Instruct employees to think before they click, taking the time to right-click on links or attachments to scan them for malware before proceeding.
Stop ransomware before it wreaks havoc on your business, using preventive measures that include customized security solutions. Contact us today to learn more!