Ransomware: Is a type of virus or malware that holds an infected victim's files hostage by encrypting them and demading a ransom to lift the encryption. In non-geek-speak this means a virus makes it practically impossible to use your files until you pay a ransom, and there is no guarantee that paying the ransom will get your files back.
Why Should you or I care?: Ransomware has exploded in 2016 and is increasingly targeting business networks instead of individual users. The total cost of damages related to these attacks is set to top $1 billion this year. It's the Locky family which is currently most prevalent family of ransomware. The malware infamously took down the network of a high-profile Los Angeles hospital in February, and its notoriety has led to it entering the top three most common forms of malware.—ZDNET
What This Means: Ransomware is one of the most prevalent viruses. Not being prepared and losing important documents could be devastating! This virus is designed to attack businesses as it starts on one computer and spreads to the others including the primary server(s).
How You Can Protect Your Valuable Data:
Awareness: Not clicking on suspicious emails or weblinks. Be careful about sharing USB drives.
Up to date and paid antivirus: You need to have an antivirus, but it doesn't stop there. It needs to be up to date and a licensed anti-virus. There are free verisons of anti-virus software out there. It's tempting to think that you're saving money, but the most free anti-virus versions have protective features disabled that the full paid versions have. If the subscription price is an issue, contact us. We can get you a better price on anti-virus licensing.
A UTM Firewall/Router (for businsses): A UTM, unified threat management, router is essential. What is the benefit of a UTM router, and what does it do? Well it's a business class router for starters with warranty and ongoing tech support. It also scans for viruses, spyware, SPAM, prevents hackers, and more before any internet traffic gets to a computer. It's special router that provides and extra layer of protection to a network between the internet and the internal network. It can also help with employee productivity by keeping them away from non work related web surfing.
Good Backup Solution Implemented: The last line of defense, and arguably the best, is a backup solution. A properly implemented on-site and off-site backup solution will save you if you do get infected. Sometimes, somehow, the viruses manage to get through. Paying the ransom is iffy at best to get your files back, but if you have good backups you can rest at night knowing you'll get your files back.
Contact Accurate Computer Solutions for any more questions or concerns.