Ransomware is now the fastest growing class of malicious software and it has evolved from simple screen blockers demanding payment to something far more dangerous.
Don’t take the authorities’ word
Don’t rely on word from Government agencies saying they have doused water over the burning ransomware fire, the truth is the authorities may stop the cyber criminals in their tracks but after a short period of time they will be back at it again – trying to infiltrate defences worldwide. The reward is so lucrative that these attackers will have faith in chance more than anything else. Take the Cryptolocker mastermind for example, Russian Evgeniy Bogachev, still eludes the authorities and because of the nature of ransomware and malware as a whole, he could easily restart operations anytime and anywhere. Or let’s say Bogachev does gets tracked, apprehended and brought to justice – what’s there to say that there aren’t any freelance ransomware artists in and around the deep web who will create their own version of ransomware or even continue where Bogachev left off.
READ OUR RELATED ARTICLE: MANAGED IT RANSOMWARE DEFENCE CHECKLIST
Use anti-malware tools
If your company has a managed IT services company then they should really have your organisation’s back covered. However as a rule of thumb it is always best to have your own personal anti-malware defences – Malwarebytes, Avast, Windows Defender or AVG – they are all pretty decent at protecting you. Remember to always update your software and download patches, we all know what could happen if you don’t download the latest patch. Updates and patches are usually ready for download on a daily basis nowadays, which goes to show the speed at which anti-malware companies are keeping up with reported attacks and protecting you, the user.
Safeguard your phones
Most of us never install anti-malware tools on our phones but yet our devices are prime targets for the modern cyber criminal. More so with Android devices, the “Svpeng Trojan” for example, is designed to first steal credentials from mobile banking apps, and then to lock the mobile device and demand a ransom. Another piece of ransomware, dubbed “Koler”, locks the screens of infected Android devices, then demands between $100 and $300 to unlock them.
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Keep a close eye on servers
Beyond laptops, desktops and mobiles, the goldmine for attackers are the servers themselves. Once infiltrated there is no end to the possibilities of damage that they could cause to an organisation. If your servers are down, most likely your whole business is down. Not only will it be down but it will be held to ransom for, we predict, a huge sum of money. Not to mention the time and money lost whilst your business is down. It’s always good to have the right network security, support and maintenance in place so that your servers and networks are monitored 24/7, 365 days a week and that your personnel are alerted even if there is a sniff of something odd-looking.
Have offsite backups
As a managed IT services company, we tell our customers to backup regularly or in most cases we backup your organisations data for you, automatically and at regular intervals. As another rule of thumb, an organisation should ALWAYS have their own personal backups (not relying heavily on the managed IT services company) which should be kept offsite – backed up, managed and updated on a regular basis. This can be in form of cloud backups or actual hard copies – with the latter requiring the most effort but will prove rewarding should an attack infiltrate the organisations defences.
IntelliTeK is one of the fastest growing IT service providers in Australia. We are always up to date with the latest threats to emails and IT security which is why we only partner with the best in the industry. If your company isn’t fully equipped to fend off cyber criminals, then get in touch with us so we can discuss your options. Call us on 1300 768 779, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, fill out the web form, or have a Live Chat with us below.