The severity of ransomware attacks has escalated to the point that it is now being treated as a terrorist act by the U.S Government. These types of cyberattacks have caused significant operational disruption for local governments, law enforcement, educational institutions and more. No industry or person can escape these destructive acts on their own devices.

Ransomware has become a more destructive threat than ever before. Criminals have refined their skill sets, and they now use extortion schemes to demand payment from both the victim’s bank account as well as the individual themselves in exchange for promises not to publish or sell sensitive data they’ve stolen ahead of time. Cyber criminals are becoming more cunning and clever; they know that trusting them is a mistake. Victims who pay to keep their data secret have been contacted weeks later, asking for another payment as the cyber criminal had sold off all of the stolen information anyway.

Ransomware attacks do not result in a data recovery after the ransom is paid. Victims should now understand how their data will be compromised forever and there’s no reason to pay criminals for crimes they committed.

Tactics to Protect your Organization from Ransomware

The best way to protect your company against ransomware is by safeguarding data and focus into three key areas:

1. Safeguarding your Online Credentials and Accounts

The process of phishing is the primary attack vector for ransomware. One way to protect yourself from this threat is by maintaining a culture of awareness around credential security, like teaching your employees how to identify suspicious emails and employing anti-phishing technology that can detect unusual activity on an account. If attackers cannot access credentials, it becomes much more difficult for them to escalate their attacks into ransoming sensitive data or files.

2. Improved Your Web Application Security

The web is a dangerous place. Online applications such as file-sharing services, forms, and e-commerce sites are constantly being attacked by hackers who want to gain access your data or steal it outright. Hackers will often use credential stuffing which involves using the information of one person’s accounts on multiple websites in order to find out what password they’re using for other apps; brute force attacks whereby attackers try different passwords until they get lucky with their hunch that you’ve used this same account elsewhere; or OWASP vulnerabilities where developers make mistakes when creating software. Once an attacker has gained control over these systems through various means including ransomware and malware injection into your network and/or user devices accessing them from.

3. Data Backup Solution

One of the most important things you can do is to make sure your backup meets these standards.

  1. Comprehensive – In order to ensure the security of your data, it is crucial that you are aware of where all this sensitive information is. This includes configuration files and any user documents on your network as well as archived data around employees or clients should they be in need for their records. All these pieces have a high chance of being lost without backing up so make sure every piece has been backed up at least once per day.
  2. Resilient – When a ransomware attack takes place, the data is encrypted and backup systems are rendered useless. The safest approach to combating these attacks is with cloud backups that replicate your files into an unlimited storage space where they can be searched for easily if needed. Office 365 users should add third party cloud backups as well in order to protect SharePoint, Teams Exchange, and OneDrive data from being lost during any future cyberattacks.

The only way to protect your company is by assuming that you will be attacked. Your plan should have contingencies for ransomware attacks, with the most important being not paying ransom demands if they are successful and trying other methods of recovery.

Let Vector One help you Safeguard your Organization from Ransomware.  To get started, contact us today!.