The recent NHS ransomware attacks has brought the issue of IT security to the fore. In this article, we explain what ransomware is and detail how you can protect your business from this potential threat. Explaining why you should have a disaster recovery strategy in place and the benefits of using good disaster recovery services.
Ransomware is a type of attack where hackers download malicious software onto yourcomputer or computer system and use it to encrypt your information. The hackers then demand the payment of a ransom in return for removing the malicious software. A ransomware attack can affect an individual PC or tablet, or your company’s entire IT system, causing severe disruption.
While the NHS is perhaps the most high profile ransomware attack to date. It is a common issue and all businesses need to be vigilant.
The best way to protect your business from the effects of a ransomware attack is to ensure you have a data backup and disaster recovery system in place – if you become subject to a ransomware attack you can simply reinstall your old data.
This means you do not have to respond to the ransomware attack and your business can carry on as normal.
Unfortunately, cyber attacks are unlikely to go away. There are, however, a number of steps you can take to protect your business from the threat of a ransomware attack in the first place.
• Review IT security
It’s worth reviewing your IT security on a regular basis to ensure you have adequate protection. Most businesses will need to use anti-virus protection, spyware and malware protection as well as hardware and software firewalls.
An IT audit will review the security you have in place to determine if it is adequate and to identify any potential gaps. Remember, as your business grows and develops, your IT security requirements will change.
• Back up your data
The most important step you can take is to back up your data. We can set in place the right data backup plan for your business. But ultimately it will mean you are not reliant upon one single source of data. If you lose access to your data, either through a ransomware attack or other IT issue, you have the in-built resilience of the backup to allow you to restore access to your systems with minimum disruption.
As well as ensuring you have data backup and adequate IT security in place, you also need to ensure workers have good IT habits to negate potential threats. Hackers need to get into your IT system in the first place in order to instigate the ransomware attack. They most commonly do this through phishing emails and online adverts.
There are three basic principles which you should encourage among all staff:
• Keep your IT systems up-to-date. Make sure your programmes are kept updated as this will help to maintain your security too.
• Think twice before opening any suspicious emails.
• Set appropriate security measures so that employees cannot load any new software onto their workplace laptops or computers. While giving, you control over the entry points into your IT systems.
If you are concerned that your business could be vulnerable to a ransomware attack, please get in touch today. We offer a wide range of disaster recovery services. We can undertake an audit and put in place the necessary data backup and security measures to ensure your business is protected from threats and has the resilience to withstand an attack.