The following post was written by our Contributing Editor, David Brezinski.
David Brezinski is a direct contributor to our Cybersecurity Course.
Ransomware attacks and campaigns raked in over 1 billion in the US in 2016, and 2017 is already en route to exceed the 2016 trend.
The latest example, WannaCry (aka WannaCrypt) which is affecting unpatched Microsoft Windows systems, is still wreaking havoc on many organizations and individuals across the world. So far, over 200k computers in 150 countries are victims.
Ransomware, like almost all other variants of malicious software, malware and nefarious tools and hacks and methods, are typically most impactful due to one critical and highly prevalent vulnerability – the human. Often times, people fall victim because they are not being vigilant and applying the regimen to ensure their personal and corporate systems are patched and basic security practices are followed.
You may be asking yourself,
How can I protect myself so I reduce the likelihood I becoming the next victim of ransomware?
Here are 5 helpful tips for your organization to take into consideration:
- Routinely backup all of your important data. Use built-in Operating System backup/restore utilities and backup data to an external drive or cloud-based backup service.
- Patch! Apply vendor security updates routinely or automatically. Also update installed applications and avoid running End-of-Life/End-of-Support Operating Systems such as Microsoft XP.
- Install and keep current antivirus/antimalware software.
- Avoid clicking on attachments or embedded links in emails.
- Be wary of downloading software, applications, utilities or other media/content from sites that may not be trustworthy. Think about what you are downloading and the source of the software.
While the steps above will take a bit of time and effort, the potential impact, costs, angst and stress that a victim of ransomware experiences is far worse.
Protect your organization from becoming the next victim and get your free trial of our Cybersecurity Course today!