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Archive for the ‘ransomware’ tag

What is Ransomware?   no comments

Posted at May 16, 2017 @ 10:12am internet security

What is Ransomware?

Over the past few years malware infections have seen an exponential growth. They are becoming more sophisticated, using newer methods that are not only harder to detect, but also require less user interaction. One of the more prominent forms of malware, especially in recent days, is called Ransomware.

 

Ransomware is form of malware, or malicious software, that carries out its attack by encrypting the data on a computer or server, then blocking access to that data until a ransom is paid.

 

Security researchers report attackers are not only upgrading their ransomware to make it more unbreakable, they are also using unique methods of distribution. In some cases, these methods require no user interaction at all. In the past, most ransomware infections occurred via phishing attacks, which required a user to click on a malicious website or email link. But these newer attacks are less dependent on user interaction and more dependent on unpatched software or Operating System vulnerabilities or poor security practices.

 

Ransomware is spreading faster and is self-replicating within organizations and businesses before coordinating ransom demands. It is critical that companies take the needed steps to prepare and protect their network as well as their local and cloud-based servers. The damage of ransomware encrypting and disabling all of your corporate data within seconds or minutes is real and has lead to some high profile cases including hospitals being locked out of all their data due to ransomware.

 

There are some easy yet vital best practices you should follow to protect yourself and your company from becoming victims of ransomware. First and by far the most important, backup your data. Second, consistently keep your software and systems up-to-date. Third, make sure you are utilizing some form of antivirus and malware protection software on your PC’s and servers. Finally, BACKUP YOUR DATA! Yes, I know I said that already, but this step is so critical it’s worth mentioning twice. If you don’t currently have a backup solution, there are many cloud-based disaster recovery and backup options to choose from, such as TurnKey Vault.

 

Your primary goal is to protect your users, not just your network. Whether they are on a laptop, tablet or smartphone, your users need to be protected everywhere.  However, it is unreasonable to assume that you will be 100% protected from every threat that exists. New more advanced methods to attack computers and encrypt their files are popping up everyday. This is why your number one priority should be to backup your data regularly.

 

Make sure whatever backup solution you deploy offers data encryption, supports both desktop PC’s and Macs, as well as Linux and Windows based servers. A backup solution like TurnKey Vault offers live cloud replication which will get you back on your feet in minutes in case of a true disaster by creating a live cloud-based copy of any PC workstation or Server accessible from anywhere over the Internet to get you access to your data and applications quickly.

 

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Written by David Maurer on May 16th, 2017

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Ransomware 2.0 – Are your servers safe?   no comments

Posted at Aug 2, 2016 @ 10:53am internet security

Are your servers safe from the latest evolution of malware – Ransomware 2.0?  You better hope so or else you will pay the price, literally.

Ransomware primarily began through email and malicious ads. However, this new breed of ransomware is targeting network and server-side vulnerabilities, with the ability to self-propagate. It will be able to quickly switch methods to maximize efficiency and will evade detection by limiting CPU usage to refrain from command-and-control actions.

Ransomware 2.0 “will start replicating on its own and demand higher ransoms. You’ll come in Monday morning and 30% of your machines and 50% of your servers will be encrypted. That’s really a nightmare scenario,” said Cisco Engineer Jason Brvenik in the Cisco 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report. These new ransomware strains will spread faster and self-replicate within organizations before coordinating ransom demands. It is critical that companies take the needed steps to prepare and protect their network as well as their local and cloud-based servers.

Now you may be wondering “What steps should I take?” Well I’m glad you asked! There are some easy yet vital best practices you should follow to protect yourself. First and by far the most important, backup your data. Second, consistently keep your software and systems up-to-date. Third, make sure you are utilizing some form of antivirus and malware protection software on your PC’s and servers. Finally, BACKUP YOUR DATA! Yes, I know I said that already, but this step is so critical it’s worth mentioning twice. If you don’t currently have a backup solution, there are many cloud-based disastery recovery and backup options to choose from, such as TurnKey Vault or Windows Server Backup.

Your primary goal is to protect your users, not just your network. Whether they are on a laptop, tablet or smartphone, your users need to be protected everywhere.  However, it is unreasonable to assume that you will be 100% protected from every threat that exists. New more advanced methods to attack computers and encrypt their files are popping up everyday. This is why your number one priority should be to backup your data regularly. If that moment comes where you find yourself infected with ransomware, the comfort of knowing your data is backed up, safe and secure, is priceless. However, if you chose not to backup your data… be prepared to pay the price.

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Written by David Maurer on August 2nd, 2016

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It’s 2016 – Is Your Office Server or Web Site Being Held Hostage?   no comments

Posted at May 5, 2016 @ 6:07am cloud security

ransomwareThe latest wave of computer security news may sound like the headline of a new Bruce Willis movie – but Ransomware is now part of the daily conversation between not only security experts, but unfortunately by office managers and PC users across the globe having to deal with the ramifications.

This year malware infections, more specifically ransomware, have seen an exponential growth. They are also becoming more sophisticated, using newer methods that are not only harder to detect, but also require less user interaction.

Security researchers report attackers are not only upgrading their malware to make it more unbreakable, they are also using unique methods of distribution. In some cases, these methods require no user interaction at all.

In the past, most ransomware infections occurred via phishing attacks, which required a user to click on a malicious website or email link. But these newer attacks are less dependent on user interaction and more dependent on unpatched vulnerabilities or poor security practices.

These new breeds of ransomware are utilizing more advanced methods to attack computers and encrypt their files, before you even realize what’s happened. You are then forced to either pay the ransom or hope you have a backup recent enough to prevent any lost data.

To protect yourself you need to follow best practices, such as

  1. backup your servers and PC’s
  2. backup your servers and PC’s
  3. see item (1) and (2) above (seriously!)
  4. keep your software and systems patched and up-to-date
  5. Have a corporate gateway firewall with advanced threat protection
  6. Have / Install / Update local AntiVirus and Malware Software protection
  7. Always avoid opening un-expected emails or attachments
  8. Avoid clicking to web sites you don’t recognize (especially if sent in email)
  9. if you aren’t backing up your servers and PC’s already – stop reading and visit https://turnkeyvault.com/

It’s pretty simple – the same things that protect your office data and servers from most threats apply here, but the damage of ransomware encrypting and disabling all your corporate data within seconds or minutes is real and has lead to some high profile cases including hospitals being locked out of all their data due to ransomware!  Don’t let your business fall victim to the bad-named villain of a Bruce Willis movie – ransomware is among the most costly cyber threats actively attacking businesses right this very second.

Make no mistake – backing up your data is a must have in any security policy, and utilizing a secure remote cloud based backup solution such as  TurnKey Vault is ideal.  Make sure whatever backup solution you deploy offers data encryption, supports both desktop PC’s and Macs, as well as Linux and Windows based servers.  A backup solution like TurnKey Vault offers live cloud replication which will get you back on your feet in minutes in case of a true disaster by creating a live cloud-based copy of any PC workstation or Server accessible from anywhere over the Internet to get you access to your data and applications quickly.  If ransomware takes over your office network you can spin up a backup live copy of your servers and PC’s with TurnKey Vault from a time before the ransomware took over your office – and will have you saying “Yippee Ki-Yay” just like Bruce Willis as the ransomeware data hostage takers wont ever see a dime, and you will have all your data safe and secure.

 

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