Ransomware - Say What?
Technology is a wonderful thing but honestly, just as you think you have it covered something new and frightening comes along. Three of our clients have fallen prey to some form of Ransomware in the last year and I am sure they will tell you it is not something you want to take a chance with.
So, Ransomware what exactly is it?
Ransomware is malicious software that cyber criminals use to hold your computer or computer files for ransom, demanding payment from you to get them back. Sadly, ransomware is becoming an increasingly popular way for malware authors to extort money from companies and consumers alike. There is a variety of ransomware can get onto a person’s machine, but as always, those techniques either boil down to social engineering tactics or using software vulnerabilities to silently install on a victim’s machine. Read more about this on the Eset website
Prevention is better than cure
Yes, our mother’s and grandmother’s all told us this as children but in most cases as in this one it really is true. So how exactly can you go about protecting yourself and your business against nasty little critters of this kind?
Back up your data
It is crucial that you keep a regular back up of your data. Should you fall victim to Ransomware it will make things a lot easier to get your system restored and up and running in the shortest amount of time possible and ensuring as little data as possible is lost. We recommend making use of an external storage device or saving a backup on a cloud drive.
Update your Software
We have said this before but we will say it again, make sure that your Microsoft Windows Software is up to date. Install the updates required on a regular basis. Authors of these kinds of malware will rely on all areas of vulnerability and if your software is outdated this just makes you more susceptible to an attack.
Either way, if you’re running Windows 7 or above then you’re safe from this round of exploits as long as you’ve applied all updates from Windows Update. If you’re still running Windows XP or Windows Vista then it’s time to look at something more modern as you’re open to these security flaws and many more that will remain unpatched and exploited. – Read more about this on The Verge website http://www.theverge.com/2017/4/15/15311846/microsoft-windows-shadow-brokers-nsa-hacks-patched
Encrypted files and attachments
Be vigilant when opening any attachments. We need to listen to our mother’s advice of telling us not to talk to strangers. If someone sends you an email with an attachment and you don’t know them or the email looks suspicious delete it. For this same reason if you send someone an attachment, say who you are and what it is that you are sending them it is just good etiquette.
It is vitally important to make sure your system is running on reputable security software. With all these nasty little critters around, and us always being active on the internet I’m afraid some free version of software is just not going to cut it! Invest in a decent product, we recommend ESET Security/Anti-Virus Software.
If after all of this you are left feeling overwhelmed and not sure what to do, gladly call us and we will help you strengthen your system against all these nasty cyber-attacks!