What is Ransomware

Ransomware is a form of malware that encrypts a victim’s information for ransom. A user or organization’s data is encrypted so that they cannot access files, databases, or applications. The attackers then demand a ransom to access the information. It can quickly paralyze an entire organization. Ransomware is a crowing threat, causing billions of dollars in damages and expenses for businesses.

How to Best Defend Against Ransomware

Back up your data

The best way to avoid the threat of being locked out of your critical files is to ensure that you always have backup copies of them, preferably in the cloud and on an external hard drive. This way, if you do get a ransomware infection, you can wipe your computer or device free and reinstall your files from backup.

Secure your backups

Make sure your backup data is not accessible for modification or deletion from the systems where the data resides. Ransomware will look for data backups and encrypt or delete them so they cannot be recovered, so use backup systems that do not allow direct access to backup files.

Use security software and keep it up to date.

Make sure all your computers and devices are protected with comprehensive security software and keep all your software up to date. Make sure you update your devices’ software early and often, as patches for flaws are typically included in each update.

Practice safe surfing

Be careful where you click. Don’t respond to emails and text messages from people you don’t know, and only download applications from trusted sources.

Only use secure networks

Avoid using public Wi-Fi networks, since many of them are not secure, and cybercriminals can snoop on your internet usage. Instead, consider installing a VPN, which provides you with a secure connection to the internet no matter where you go.

Implement a security awareness program

Provide regular security awareness training for every member of your organization so they can avoid phishing and other social engineering attacks. Conduct regular drills and tests to be sure that training is being observed.

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