Ransomware is software that executes a vicious attack on a computer that in many cases completely incapacitates the system. A ransom is demanded in order for the computer to operate properly again. The cost of these attacks for business owners could be tens of thousands of dollars in lost business. This loss does not include the money demanded by hackers. Fortunately, there are a number of methods available to business owners to protect their businesses from malicious attacks.
- Employee Training
The first line of defense against ransomware attacks is a well-trained group of employees. All employees need to know what to do if there is malicious attack unleashed on their computer and what the first line of defense is against these attacks. The first thing an employee will need to do is complete an action before the virus attacks the computer.
All businesses should have a vendor or an IT team provide regular training to your employees regarding malicious attacks. Things employees should understand include:
- Do not click on any links that do not make sense. For example, a message from a courier service when you are not expecting a package would be cause for concern.
- Check the address spelling for any email received. Many times malicious attacks will come through emails made to look like they came from a reputable company.
- Contact the IT department when a suspicious email arrives. Forward the email to them only if they instruct you to.
If all employees are properly trained and know how to protect themselves against online viruses, then you will be able to defend your business from ransomware.
- Keep Your System Current
Continuous updates to your computer system are vital to keeping your business safe. These updates will help to patch holes in your security system and eliminate weak spots that cybercriminals can exploit. One example of this is the Petya attack. The attack targeted a weakness that Microsoft had already addressed. Unfortunately, many users were left unprotected because they did not properly update their systems.
It is important to remember that vendors are just as motivated to prevent ransomware attacks as you are. This is why you should perform all updates that are suggested to your businesses computer systems.
- Disaster Recovery Solutions
Even when employees are well-trained and your security system is up to date, there is still the possibility that your system can become vulnerable to cybercriminals. A multi-layered security system is a must to provide your system with the security you need. This means your efforts at security can not end when initial defenses are breached.
Multi-layered security efforts are largely dependent on disaster recovery solutions. The damage you and your company will incur when an attack is made on your main computer system will be greatly mitigated if you can continue full operations through the use of a backup system.
A third-party vendor can be used to identify the protection you need for your system and install the tools and systems that are necessary to provide this protection. Employing a team of professionals will remove any guesswork and ensure your system is as protected as possible.
The Bottom Line
Your business can protect themselves against ransomware by making sure all employees are properly trained, make regular updates to your computer system as well as have a disaster recovery solution in place. While these attacks can damage your businesses computer system if you don’t take the necessary precautions, the three methods above have proven effective for owners to protect their businesses against these malicious cyber-attacks.