You have heard of it, now it is time to learn how to prevent ransomware from taking over your computers. Ransomware has become one of the biggest issues facing businesses today. It can take many forms, from simple screen-blocking messages to much more sophisticated attacks that require paying a ransom, typically in a cryptocurrency to get your data back. This would require corporations to have a crypto wallet ready. While ransomware can certainly cause serious damage to your business, there are many steps you can take to prevent a ransomware attack at your business, including these five tips below.
1) Have an immutable backup of your data
An immutable backup is a great first step in preventing ransomware from taking over your data. This ensures that you can recover your data in case of ransomware. Ensure you have a backup of your data by having two copies of it: one on-site and one off-site. You may want to hire an expert who specializes in cybersecurity awareness, or there are plenty of tutorials online that explain how to set up an immutable backup.
2) Use a reputable data backup software suite
Unlike cyber criminals, you don’t want to rely on trial and error to complete your mission. Instead, backup your business data to an immutable cloud repository with a reputable, cloud-based data backup software suite such as Veeam and Wasabi. A quality backup goes a long way to prevent ransomware attacks from succeeding.
3) Keep your computers and servers up-to-date
In a perfect world, we’d install all software updates as soon as they become available. The reality is your IT Team may procrastinate on installing updates for one reason or another—even when those updates fix known security vulnerabilities and patch bugs that could potentially expose sensitive data. Keeping your computers and servers up-to-date is an essential step in cybersecurity readiness, but it’s also one of the easiest things you can do to protect your business from ransomware.
4) Don’t open emails you don’t trust
If you really want to prevent ransomware, stop using email. Just kidding, that isn’t practical in today’s business climate. Cybercriminals often send out emails that make you think they’re legitimate. Always be on guard. Even if a message appears legit, don’t open it. Cybercriminals can disguise their emails as just about anything: invoices, bills, bank notices, and more. If you don’t recognize an email sender or its subject line, delete it. Always exercise cybersecurity awareness—it’s your first line of defense against ransomware!
5) Encrypt company data
Today, many companies have to encrypt their data because they know it’s valuable and they need to prevent ransomware from taking over. Cybersecurity awareness is growing, and with it comes the understanding that hackers will go after whatever they can. But too often, that data isn’t encrypted; in fact, according to one study by security company Kaspersky Lab, 57 percent of businesses don’t encrypt their corporate data. And if you think a hacker won’t try to recover your data? Think again: 44 percent of businesses surveyed said there was a chance a malicious third party would be able to retrieve their data. As ransomware is becoming increasingly prevalent, encryption could very well save your business—and your data recovery system might end up being critical for making sure you still have something left to run when everything has been decrypted.