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How To Be Ready When Ransomware Strikes   no comments

Posted at Jul 11, 2017 @ 11:16am disaster recovery

How to be Ready when Ransomware Strikes

From buying insurance policies to installing security cameras, you take every possible step to protect your business from disaster. But you power on your computer and are met with a screen that claims to have encrypted all of your files. Unless you pay a fee before the timer expires, the program will delete your files forever. Although each situation will be different, this is what will likely happen when ransomware strikes your business.

If you store your customer data, tax information, contracts or any other important files on your network, your business can suffer. Not only will ransomware lock your files, but it can also destroy your reputation if your customers find out that your servers are not secure. When the future of your business is on the line, you can’t afford to leave yourself exposed to the threat.

Taking preventative steps to minimize the effects ransomware is a lot easier than trying to remove it. Once the ransomware takes over a computer, you won’t be able to recover your files without paying the ransom. To ensure your business is ready for a ransomware attack, you will need to focus on these key areas: Employee Education, Cloud Backups, and Disaster Recovery as a Service or DRaaS.

 

Employee Education

Criminals and hackers will use a range of tactics to infect a business or organization with their malicious software, including sending an email containing an infected link to one of your employees. The infected email can even be made to appear as if it came from one of your company’s email addresses. The moment your employee clicks on the link, the ransomware will jump into action and hold your files hostage. Also, if a member of your team is infected at home and brings a flash drive to work, you could have a problem on your hands.

Teaching your employees how to stay safe online is one of the top ways to protect your business from such attacks. If you want to avoid taking unneeded risks, prevent your employees from using personal devices on your network. Ensure that each person who works for you knows not to click on links unless they are sure that no danger is present. When someone from your company sends an email, have your team call the person to confirm that the email is legitimate. In addition to showing people how to stay safe when they use your network, consider putting policies in place to add an extra layer of protection.

 

Cloud Backups

Ransomware can easily spread across your office network, encrypting and possibly deleting all of your company’s files. If you want to do everything that you can to avoid such a disaster, consider getting a dedicated cloud backup server or solution for your business. Doing so will allow you to store copies of your files outside of your infected office network, so that you can recover them after an attack.

One thing to keep in mind when searching for a cloud backup provider is storage limits. If your business has a large amount of data that will need to be backed up into the cloud, consider looking for a provider that offers an unlimited storage option.

 

Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

No matter how prepared, you can never totally eliminate the threat of ransomware. Even if you have taken the step to backup all of you company’s critical files, you can still be left with the daunting task of restoring all that data as well as needing to recover your company’s entire IT infrastructure. This is where Disaster Recovery as a Service or DRaaS comes in.

With a DRaaS solution, you can have a complete backup of your business’s vital IT infrastructure at an off-site datacenter. Entire operating systems, whether it be physical or virtual, databases or individual files and folders can all safely and securely be replicated to a datacenter. Data can then be securely pushed back down to your office location, or it can even be restored into a virtual cloud environment, utilizing Cloud Replication.

DRaaS solutions that feature Cloud Replication allow for the restoration of data to a virtualized server. Utilizing an off-site datacenter’s cloud infrastructure, data can be made available instantly, then accessed remotely from anywhere in the world over multiple, redundant, high speed networks. This removes the bottleneck of local internet service providers bandwidth availability, and saves potentially hours of business critical time by bypassing the need to wait for your onsite systems to restore and be back in working order.

Should a disaster occur in which your infrastructure is no longer available or accessible to be restored, the need to purchase new hardware can be completely eliminated. Utilizing a DRaaS solution can have your business back online in minutes, not days. Employees can continue their work from home, remotely accessing images of their old workstations running live in the cloud, ensuring your business does not skip a beat.

 

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Written by David Maurer on July 11th, 2017

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