Many businesses — whether small, medium or large scale — are put on high alert because of the alarming increase of file-encrypting ransomware cases over the past few years. Companies that became victims of ransomware are limited or prevented from accessing their data or even their systems. Cybercriminals use this malware to encrypt the data or system of their targets and extort money from them. They use two kinds of ransomware:
This leaves data untouched but restricts owners and users from accessing it on their devices.
This leaves owners and users access to their files and applications but encrypts it which makes it impossible to read.
McAfee Labs researchers discovered more than 4 million ransomware samples including 1.2 million new variants. In addition, they said that it is expected that those numbers will grow even more.
How does ransomware get into the company’s system? Ransomware can get into your system in a variety of methods:
A hacker uses this method to deceive potential victims into disclosing sensitive information or downloading malicious files disguised as a legitimate e-mail from a fictional source. For example, receiving spam e-mails with suspicious links or files attached to it.
A ransomware can be traced from an online advertisement that is infected with a virus. This takes advantage of the advertisements placed in a legitimate site to spread the malware to users.
Infected removable drives
People are the security’s weakest link. Many are uneducated about worms infecting removable drives such as external hard drives or USB flash drives. Hackers have taken advantage of this vulnerability and have set malwares to install automatically as soon as the removable drives are connected. This is why more companies are hiring managed IT services in Australia — because of their highly trained and certified technicians.
You will know your system is infected by ransomware when a window pops up as soon as you open an infected e-mail attachment or application and instructs you to pay a ransom in digital currency like Bitcoin. Your company should know what immediate actions to do when it suffers a ransomware attack.
Pay the ransom
According to the FBI, only pay the ransom if the infected files are essential to your company. If not, you will just give hackers the idea that your company is susceptible to ransomware attacks which will mean more threats to your company.
Restore infected files using backups
If you have backups, you can restore your system to a normal condition without paying any ransom.
Contact your cybersecurity/forensic company for aid
Call for immediate support from a cybersecurity firm or IT security services Australia in finding solutions for your locked system.
Ransomware infections are spreading rapidly. Hackers are getting more sophisticated in operating ransomware scams. Your company should be aware of this risk and ensure standard precautionary measures to protect your system against malware infections. It is advised to have a proactive anti-virus software, implement backups in separate locations, regular maintenance and applications patching and conduct employee risk awareness training. The threat will continue to improve its malicious tactics and target more vulnerable businesses. It is best to implement the best practices for prevention and enforce risk recovery plan for your business.