Ransomware is becoming more Sophisticated and Dangerous
Years ago, ransomware protection amounted to building a strong 3-2-1 backup program and validating your backups with an occasional restore. However, modern ransomware has evolved to exfiltrate your data in addition to encrypting it. Even if you have good backups, hackers know they can publish your critical data online to force you into paying the ransom. Therefore, the only viable protection today is prevention.
Prevention required training and testing your employees including yourself. Learn how to spot and avoid phishing attacks, one of the primary methods of infecting companies with ransomware. Remove local administrative rights to prevent an errant click from introducing malware to your environment. Segment your network and limit access to data stores and databases to prevent encryption and exfiltration of data that most users never need access to.
In addition to the above ransomware protection measures, follow CyberHoot’s best practice advice below. Scroll down for additional reading and an important training video.
CyberHoot Best practices:
- Train your employees on the common attacks that are out there. From weak passwords and password managers, to the importance of multi-factor authentication and how to spot phishing attacks. Awareness is the key to defending your business.
- Govern you employees with cybersecurity policies including Acceptable Use, Password, Information Handling and a Written Information Security Policy.
- Establish cybersecurity best practice processes such as a Vulnerability Alert Management Process (VAMP) and a Cybersecurity Incident Management Process (CIMP) to guide and require action in the face of an emergency. Then move on onboarding and offboarding processes, SaaS management processes, and 3rd party risk management.
- Establish strong technical protections including: a Firewall, antivirus, anti-malware, anti-spam, multi-factor authentication on all critical accounts, Enable full disk encryption, manage the keys carefully, and most importantly, adopt, train on and require all employees to use a Password Manager.
- Test employees on how to spot and avoid phishing attacks. CyberHoot has released a disruptive method of Phish Testing the fills in gaps in your employees knowledge without punishing them for failure. Instead we reward them for success. More info is available here.
- Backup your data by following our 3-2-1 Backup methodology to ensure you can recover your business from a cybersecurity event.
- In the modern Work-from-Home era, make sure you’re managing personal devices connecting to your network by validating their security (patching, antivirus, DNS protections) or prohibiting their use entirely.
- If you haven’t had a risk assessment by a 3rd party in the last 2 years, you should have one now. Establishing a risk management framework in your organization is critical to addressing your most egregious risks with your finite time and money.
- Buy Cyber-Insurance to protect you in a catastrophic failure situation. Cyber-Insurance is no different than Car, Fire, Flood, or Life insurance. It’s there when you need it most.
CyberHoot believes that for many small to medium sized businesses and MSPs, you can greatly improve your defenses and chances of not becoming another victim of cyberattack if you follow the advice above.