How Do You Protect Your Company from Ransomware?

Is your company at risk for a ransomware attack? How do you protect your business from ransomware? Learn tips and tricks in this informative blog post now.  

Each year, thousands of businesses across the country are affected by hacking and data breach events. Unfortunately, many of these situations also include a special subset called ransomware, which costs companies in upwards of thousands of dollars each incident. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to keep this from happening. Here is what you need to know to protect your company from a possible ransomware infection.

What is Ransomware?

Before we can discuss how to prevent it, we need to talk about what it is. Ransomware is malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid. It will encrypt your files, folders, databases, and other information on your network until you pay the ransom. It is incredibly common, too. In 2018, there were over 204 million reported attacks across the globe.

In theory, once the money is paid, an encryption code is sent to you to allow you to unlock your files. But this isn’t always true and paying a ransom to a cybercriminal isn’t always easy. Most require payment in Bitcoin or another form of cryptocurrency. In turn, this prevents the ability to track the criminal by authorities.

There is no type of business that is specifically immune. Ransomware affects small startups and large corporations alike.

How Do You Protect Your Business from Ransomware?

In most cases, hackers target ransomware victims that they know aren’t prepared for this type of incident and have the available funds to make the ransom payment. However, there are a few steps you can take as a business owner or manager to ensure it doesn’t happen to you. A few basic recommendations include:

  • Make sure you have a robust business continuity and a master recovery plan in place. Backups should be done daily, both on-site and in the cloud. This will allow you to revert back to the file and ignore any ransomware demands.
  • Invest in the best security software. This includes anti-virus software, anti-malware programs, DNS filtering, business-grade firewalls, and more. Remember, an ounce of protection is always worth having to wait for a cure!
  • Never click or open any email attachment without first verifying the authenticity of the sender. If you aren’t expecting to receive a file, definitely do not open it. Delete anything suspicious and make sure all of your employees understand good habits when it comes to downloading files.
  • Participate in regular cybersecurity awareness training. Designed for both staff and management, these pieces of training help ensure everyone is in the know about potential risks.

Finally, make sure your IT service company knows what they are doing. Many companies claim to be cybersecurity experts, but not all of them are really up to the task. Do your homework and verify that you’re working with a team that knows their stuff and can assist in keeping malware infections from happening.

What Should You Do If You Suspect You’ve Been Infected by Ransomware?

If you suspect you’ve been infected by ransomware, it is important to contact your IT services company immediately to try to get the situation resolved. And do not under any circumstances pay the hackers the money they are requesting! This just sets them up to try this again with either your company or another one.

From there, you’ll also want to take a few additional precautions. Use a smartphone or other camera to take a photo of any ransom demands that show up on the screen so that you can file a police report with your local jurisdiction. Try to think back to any files you’ve recently opened or websites that you don’t normally go to. Report both of these to your IT partner and the police.

Wrapping It All Up

When it comes down to it, ransomware is more than just annoying and costly. It’s also highly illegal. By taking a few extra steps, you can make sure it never happens to you.

At Essential Solutions LLC, we are here to help companies of all sizes with their anti-ransomware measures. Please contact us today to learn more or to discuss your unique needs.