5 ways to help protect your business from ransomware attacks

Ransomware is a form of malware used by cyber criminals to freeze your computer or mobile device, steal your data and demand a “ransom” — typically anywhere from a couple of hundred to thousands of dollars — be paid. Ransomware can affect computers or laptops, enterprise networks, servers used by government agencies, financial institutions, healthcare providers and much more.

Recovery from a ransomware attack can be costly and have a lasting impact on your business. Consider the following tips to help your business avoid ransomware attacks:

Educate your employees

Employees can serve as a first line of defense to combat online threats and can actively help stop malware from infiltrating the organization’s system.  A strong security program paired with employee education about the warning signs, safe practices and responses can play an important part in preventing these threats.

Manage the use of privileged accounts

Restrict users’ ability to install and run software applications on network devices. This may help limit your network’s exposure to malware.

Create a data backup and recovery plan for all critical information

Backups are essential for lessening the impact of potential malware threats. Store the data in a separate device or offline in order to access it in the event of a ransomware attack.

Make sure all business devices are up-to-date

Ensure antivirus and anti-malware solutions are set to automatically update and conduct regular scans so that your operating systems operate efficiently. Failure to properly maintain and update these programs may leave your operating systems exposed.

Contact your local FBI field office

Contact your local FBI field office immediately to report a ransomware event and request assistance. Visit https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field to locate the office nearest you. Don’t try to deal with the ransomware attack on your own.

For more information on protecting your business from cyber criminals, consider the following resources from The Vault.

Video: Interview with IT expert Mark Holley

Blog post: Spear Phishing: Don’t Become the Next Victim

Blog post: How to protect your business from account fraud

Related Articles