From budgetary issues to changing IT compliance rules, there seems to be no shortage of problems for a business. However, there are certain concerns that rise above others, and ransomware has risen to the top. Ransomware can completely shut down your operations, and these attacks ran rampant in 2021. There has never been a more important time to take the necessary steps to prevent ransomware attacks.
Like spyware or Trojans, ransomware is a type of malware capable of infecting your computer systems. True to its name, this form of malware is designed specifically to block access to files, applications, or even your operating system, until a ransom is paid. The first case of ransomware was documented in 1989, then known as the PC Cyborg virus.
Despite its decades-long existence, ransomware wasn’t widespread until recently. Since 2016, more than 4,000 ransomware attacks have been occuring on a daily basis according to the U.S. government. That number climbed even higher in 2020 and 2021 as the workforce shifted to remote work. It’s believed that the surge of ransomware is related to the advancement of payment collection options, ransomware gangs, and the proliferation of ransomware as a service.
If you want your business to stay secure in today’s cyber landscape, then you need to start getting serious about ransomware prevention. As experts in cybersecurity, Netprotechs has the solutions you need to guard against ransomware. In addition to our services, here are some ransomware prevention tips and tricks you can use to stay safe:
You may have noticed that software companies are always releasing new updates for their programs. We understand it can be annoying to get notified over and over again about an available update, but it’s something you shouldn’t ignore. Usually, the reason why you see updates so frequently is because the company is trying to keep their product secure.
Cyberthreats, like ransomware, are constantly evolving as hackers attempt to find new vulnerabilities they can attack. In response to this, companies issue patches meant to fix known weaknesses before they can be exploited. As a result, the sooner you update your software, the better protected your system is.
Your employees are your last line of defense against all cyberattacks. Not even the strongest cybersecurity can hold up to human error. That’s why one of the best things you can do for ransomware prevention is to educate.
Building cybersecurity awareness starts by teaching your staff about cyberthreats, how to detect ransomware, how to avoid it, and what to do if the device is infected. This can be done by providing online courses, learning tools, and other helpful items. In addition to education, training should be done to put what your employee’s learned to the test (e.g. simulated phishing attacks).
A great way to test your ransomware protection is to perform a penetration test. Also known as a pentest, this is a threat remediation tactic where you essentially coordinate an attack on your own infrastructure. It may sound counterintuitive, but it plays an important role in ransomware prevention. The main purpose of this test is to reveal flaws in your security so you can fix them before they can be exploited for real.
Pen tests are carried out by ethical hackers to improve the cybersecurity of a company. But before you start one, there are few types of penetration testing you should know about:
- White Box: The ethical hacker is given some information on the company’s security beforehand.
- Black Box: The hacker attacks the network without any data beforehand. This is also called a “blind test.”
- Covert: This is a test where only a small number of people are aware that a pentest is being performed. This is also known as a “double blind” test.
- External: An external test targets the external assets of the company, like the company’s public website.
- Internal: The hacker starts the pentest from inside the firewall.
If a ransomware infection manages to penetrate your firewalls, remember that the fight isn’t over yet. If you can catch it early enough, you can mitigate the danger. To catch the malware before it has the chance to cause any damage requires the help of network monitoring. This is a tool that allows you to monitor the activity in your network.
With network monitoring, you can detect, quarantine, and boot the cyberthreat from your system. For network monitoring, businesses often rely on a managed service provider (MSP). Once you partner with an MSP, they can monitor your network 24/7. If there’s anything suspicious lurking in your network, the monitoring tool alerts your MSP, allowing them time to remove the threat before you notice anything wrong.
You’ve probably seen your fair share of spam emails over the years. While most spam is harmless and easy to spot, some messages can be dangerous. In fact, phishing emails are the main attack vector for ransomware.
If you receive an email prompting you to click a link or open an attached document, verify that it’s from a trusted source. Anything you think is suspicious should be reported to your IT department or IT provider. They can perform a check on the email to determine if it’s safe.
Netprotechs is a leading IT company that has years of experience helping companies with their cybersecurity needs. Whether you want to fend off ransomware or need to achieve cybersecurity compliance, we have the solutions you’re looking for.
Contact us today to learn more.
Whether you are adding a location to your business network or you need to augment your in-house team with 24×7 monitoring, Netprotechs matches the right solutions to your organization’s goals.