Ransomware Attacks – How to Protect your Business Financially
Ransomware attacks are becoming increasingly popular among cyber criminals. And are certainly not unknown to security managers. After all, they are now counted among the most frequent attacks.
Attackers use malware to encrypt company’s data and then demand money with the promise to decrypt the data again. On the one hand, the data encrypted by the ransomware cannot be used, which hinders business processes and can cause economic damage. On the other hand, several victims of ransomware attacks have actually paid the ransom. The financial damage is enormous for any business entity, and the attacks by hackers are becoming increasingly sophisticated.
But with a few preventive measures, the risk of such an attack on your own company can at least be greatly minimized.
This article lists basic security measures to prevent your company from ransomware attacks to a great extent.
Protect System Portals
The first important thing is to protect all system portals. Ransomware attackers like to use provisionally set up portals whose protection has been forgotten.
Therefore it is necessary to check the network for open connections. In this context, strong passwords and two-factor authentication are also very important.
Evaluate System Logs
The good news for companies is that ransomware attacks usually do not happen without warning. Attackers need some time to scout a company’s network, search for vulnerabilities and identify them. Often, system logs contain clues-unanticipated actions at an unusual time, external network connections that show an unusual pattern, or the creation of new accounts.
Logs often contain many signs, such as the appearance of “grey hat” hacking tools that are not expected. It is therefore very useful to read and evaluate system logs. If a company finds relevant information, it can anticipate attackers – close existing security gaps and sensitize its employees.
Criminals usually need some time, often days or longer, to get a picture of the entire network. In this way, they make sure that the attack triggers the desired destructive outcome in order to get the ransom.
Re-evaluate basic security measures
Although companies often believe that they have really paid attention to all basic security measures, and the constant admonition to do so now triggers an escape or deep sleep reflex, it remains a fact that ransomware attacks are usually successful when the victims commit fundamental errors.
Warnings should also be heeded urgently. If an alarm system is constantly sounding, a certain alarm fatigue will certainly set in, which leads to clicking through the warnings without much attention.
But caution is needed here, because really important alarms can so easily be overlooked, for example if they indicate that a potential threat has already been blocked. Often threats on the network are not just random events. They are proof that cyber criminals are already sniffing around carefully in order to explore the alarm systems – always hoping to launch a large and promising attack.
This article has been written by Chandra Mehta.
Chandra is a seasoned banker with 35+ years of experience in banking and financial services industry. He’s a retired banker and has served as Chief Manager and Assistant Vice President in State Bank of India/or its subsidiaries. He has authored many articles on this site (allonmoney.com).