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3 Frightening Ransomware Tactics

by / Tuesday, 31 October 2017 / Published in News

Ransomware is on the rise. Most companies that become infected just want to get their systems back online. CNBC reports that over 70% of businesses infected end up paying the ransom just to get things up and running again. To ad further insult to injury, many companies never retrieve all their data back, even when they pay. Take a look at these three key ransomware tactics that take companies down every week and how to protect your company from these horrifying attacks.

Hair-raising ransomware. Ransomware attacks are on the rise and so are the ransom amounts. From 2015 to 2016 the number of ransomware attacks quadrupled and this year it looks like we will at least double over last year. Infections are projected to continue rising. So, how are these attacks happening with such frequency? Where do they even come from? And, what can you do to safeguard your company from disaster?

Frightening ransomware tactics. There are quite a few ways ransomware can wiggle into your network, but here are three of the most prominent we’ve seen this year.

  1. Infected e-mail messages open the door. According to a recent IBM study, almost 40% of all spam messages contained ransomware last year. This is a staggering number considering there were over 30 trillion spam e-mails sent out. Don’t become a statistic. Keep your company safe with a solid spam filtering solution in place to knock out those spam messages before users can open and read them. Also, inform your staff of the risks associated with spam messages and advise them to report suspicious messages. Make sure they know not to click on links in the message or open any attachments. Links and attachments are the preferred method for hackers to deliver ransomware to your computer and network.
  2. Browsing websites online can put a spell on you. Osterman Research found that 24% of all ransomware infections came through websites that were unassociated with an e-mail. People simply browsing online trip over a horribly infected site that latches onto their computer. Unfortunately, these types of ransomware don’t just stop at one computer, they feed off the entire network if they can spreading like wildfire.
  3.  Social media and storage drives deliver a jump-scare. Keep your personal life at home. Storage drives and social media websites can be risky for businesses. Osterman Research also found that roughly 17% of the assessed ransomware attacks were rooted from social media, storage devices, and business applications.

Are you prepared?
We have handled our fair share of ransomware attacks this year and the best advice we have to give is be prepared. Regardless of how much money you spend on security, there is no sure fire way to safeguard your office from all threats. Here are a few things you can do to prepare and recover quickly from a ransomware attack.

Lock down your network tight. Make sure you have security protocols in place to only allow users access to necessary systems for their positions. This user level access will prevent their computers from infecting more critical systems should something happen originating on their workstation.

We’ve found a sweet solution. Good back-ups! The only businesses who have been able to quickly resolve a ransomware attack without paying the ransom, close to 100% of the time, are those who had dependable back-up and recovery solutions in place.

A few short hours of prevention can give you back two days of operations. Ok, so that just sounds silly right, but it’s not. On average, most businesses face a minimum of two days down time when there is an infection and there are no viable backups. You would be surprised at the number of unmonitored and failed back-ups we find when running network assessments for new clients. Incremental backups are also a major concern. Some companies only back-up once a week or a few times each month. This means, all the time between the infection and the last back-up will be lost unless you break open your pocket book, fork over the ransom, and cross all your fingers and toes.

Ready for a FREE Network Assessment? Give us a call today if you are concerned about any of these terrifying tactics giving you a jump-scare. We will go through all the aspects of your network to measure how well each piece is performing. Then we will present you with a full report of our findings so you can easily see where your systems can be improved. No tricks, no treats, just a full assessment that includes checks on your firewall, antivirus, security policies, and much more.

Remote Operations Company (888) 837-4466