By: Truewater Technical Department
Ransomware has increasingly become a problem for many devices around the world and hasn’t shown signs of slowing down its infectious spread. Luckily, there are defenses one can set up to mitigate the risk of getting infected.
Ransomware, as defined by the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT), is “a type of malicious software, or malware, designed to deny access to a computer system or data until a ransom is paid.” There are a number of different ways it can make its way into a network, whether it’s through a malicious download, from an email with a malicious attachment, or even a website posing as legitimate. Once it is on a computer within a network, it begins to attempt to spread to other computers by exploiting the LAN connections between them. Once a system is infected, it will typically display a note asking for a ransom, usually in Bitcoin. The note will then go on to say that the PCs will not be decrypted unless the user pays the ransom.
If you or your organization is ever hit with a ransomware attack, it is vital that you never pay the ransom. This not only funds the hackers and allows them to continue attacks, but it is almost a guarantee that the hackers will not release your network once they are paid.
Luckily, there are steps you can take to avoid getting hit with ransomware. It is always a good idea to have a strong backup in place for all of your files. If multiple offsite backups are kept, it is almost a guarantee that any files backed up will be recoverable. Also, a strong antivirus with constant updates is a strong defense for any PC that is constantly receiving internet traffic. Microsoft and other software makers are constantly releasing updates to their products that include extra protections against attacks like these, so it is always recommended to keep your devices up to date on patches.