Ransomware has the annoying characteristic of sneaking up on you. If you aren’t prepared, you may as well pay the ransom. Why? Because being prepared for loss of data is not at all difficult. First off–think old school . . . BACK UP, BACK UP, and BACK UP! This first very important step is that simple.
Think about what you do on your devices today, professionally or personally. We now live our lives in this digital environment. It is likely your use of technology has increased, even in the past year. This puts all of us at risk. Not just on our desktops either. Wired.com reports “these days ransomware doesn’t just affect desktop machines or laptops; it also targets mobile phones. Last week news broke of a piece of ransomware in the wild masquerading as a porn app. The so-called Porn Droid app targets Android users and allows attackers to lock the phone and change its PIN number while demanding a $500 ransom from victims to regain access.” Not many people could function today without access to their phones. Businesses are becoming more and more friendly to mobile devices as well. All this data floating around just makes it more appealing to hackers.
Where do we go from here? Back . . . back to backing up. Get that portable hard drive back out, dust it off, and use it. Yup . . . I did say that. Back it all up. Of course, for businesses it is more complex (and critical). But that is what cloud storage services are for. My only recommendation when it comes to off-site backups? Use more than one service. This way if anything does happen to your access to one backup, you will still have access to another. Inserting stern warning here: Do not store your passwords on your devices or in your backups unencrypted. If a hacker can access and lock up your systems, then he can find your passwords and have a go at them as well, including access to your backups.
Protect your business. Train your employees about new threats and monitor what is happening. Information is a gold mine–get visibility to see where your employees are going and then make some decisions that can protect your business. Ransomware can hit you through just a link in an e-mail. Make sure you have a solution in place that will help stop access to malicious Web sites.
We need to rethink the way we operate. It is just a shift, and if you just do it now, then you won’t be alarmed when you do get hit. Sadly, chances of a business being victimized by cybercrime are becoming more and more likely. Be prepared. And please, don’t let them win. The Internet has opened up so many opportunities for us and generations to come. Singapore is a perfect example of letting hackers win. They are moving to shut down Internet access for government computers, “from May next year and affect about 100,000 computers in use in the public service in the city-state, local media said.” (Reuters)
Do you think giving up Internet access will solve cybercrime?
We can help you find a better way.
About Wavecrest Computing
Celebrating 20 years in business, Wavecrest Computing, headquartered in historic downtown Melbourne, FL, has provided commercial business and government clients with reliable, accurate Web-use management and Cloud Access Security Broker products since 1996. Managed Service Providers, IT specialists, HR professionals, and business managers trust Wavecrest’s Cyfin and CyBlock products to manage employee Internet usage — managing cloud services, reducing liability risks, improving productivity, saving bandwidth, and controlling costs. Wavecrest has clients worldwide, including General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Florida Department of Health, Siemens, Department of Homeland Security, and a growing list of global enterprises and government agencies. We are a proud long-term GSA contract holder. For more information on the company, products, and partners, visit http://www.wavecrest.net.