There’s been a lot in the news over the last few weeks about ransomware attacks.
Let us clear up some things for you.
First of all, what is a ransomware attack? It’s where a criminal gets access to your data, and then encrypts it. So the data is still there, but you cannot read it or use it. It’s total garbage.
If you don’t have unaffected backups, the only way to get your data back is to pay a large ransom fee, typically in Bitcoin.
What effect can ransomware have on your business? It can be totally devastating. Even without paying the ransom, it can cost your business thousands of dollars to reinstate your data and secure your network. Never mind the days of downtime.
So how do criminals get in? There are typically three ransomware attack methods:
Exploit kits: These are used to compromise a website with hidden code in adverts (known as malvertizing). These secretly redirect you a bad page and download a malicious payload, which infects your system.
Malicious attachments in email: Often, the emails look genuine and appear to be sent by someone you know and trust. That could be someone within your business, a supplier, or even your bank. When you open the attachment, the ransomware is triggered and infects your device.
Malicious links in email: You receive a link via email, which infects your device when you click it. Again, these emails seem to be from a believable source, which is why so many people are duped into clicking them.
The more prepared and protected you are, the better.