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Ransomware: What You Should Know

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Ransomware is malicious software that encrypts and holds your data hostage for ransom. If you don’t or cannot pay the ransom, your data is gone forever. 

The reality is that in today’s world even ordinary small businesses are constantly under attack by hackers. You may think that you don’t have any data that would be valuable to a hacker, but as Crypto has taught us they are now targeting data that is valuable to YOU which in turn makes it valuable to them.

If they can get access to it, they “steal” it, hold it hostage, and sell it back to YOU. Using new anonymous payment methods like bitcoin, they have found a way to build a highly automated business that simply sells us our own most valuable business data, with little chance of being identified or getting caught.

 

The FBI recently published a warning to alert the public about a recent rise in the spread of ransomware in the U.S. Click HERE to see FBI alert I-062315-PSA.

Due to an outbreak of CryptoWall and CryptoLocker in the Nashua area this fall, we have published a Crypto Alert with more information, but here is some basic info you need to know.
#1. What is Ransomware?
Quite simply, ransomware is a form a malware which locks your computer and puts it at ransom. The hacker then demands a sum of money, and if it's not paid within a certain amount of time, all data is wiped clean from your device. It's more complicated than it sounds, though. Compared to the average form of malware, it encrypts and locks all the files on your hard drive, making it very difficult to remove. This leads to most victims paying up and giving in to the hacker's demands, instead of looking for a solution. 
#2. What Can Be Done?
First of all, it's important you know how to avoid this cyber scam. Ransomware spreads through e-mail attachments, infected programs and compromised websites. With that said, don't open any emails that seem suspicious, and avoid websites that look untrustworthy. However, if you do become a victim, make sure your data has been backed up on a constant basis. You never know what might happen to your computer, and ransomware exploits this. People who don't have their data on a separate hard drive, will face the consequences and have no option but to pay up. On the other hand, users who've backed up their information, will have a better sense of security.

Does your business take data and cyber security seriously? 

Do you encourage and promote security awareness and safe computing practices? 
Get the conversation started with our FREE Cyber Security Toolkit.

We have compiled a series of free downloads and links that include educational tools such as:

  • Security awareness posters.  Hang these in the lunch room and rotate them throughout the year, keep security on peoples mind everyday.
  • Educational videos. Many users don't really understand the role that they play in keeping your network safe, or NOT SO SAFE.network security
  • Whitepapers, handouts and info graphics. More tools to use at company meetings and training sessions.
  • Links for free software and tools to keep your users home computers and mobile devices safe.
  • General tips and guidelines for safe computing best practices.

Interested in a free Cyber Security Review?

If you have questions about network security, or you are facing a compliance review or audit, contact us today at 603-889-0800 for a free confidential conversation about how White Mountain can help.

With the surge in the number of small and medium businesses that have fallen prey to malware and cyber criminals, there is a lot of focus of what an organization can do to prevent being a victim and how the company should handle themselves after an attack. There is another key factor to preventing cyber criminals from penetrating into your network:...

- Onsite Service Coverage Area -

Onsite Computer Support Services are available to businesses within 100 miles of Nashua New Hampshire. We have excellent onsite coverage from Concord NH, south through Manchester NH and then down into Boston. From Northern and Central Mass we cover from Worcester, east to the North Shore, including the Salem and Portsmouth NH area.

 

603-889-0800

White Mountain IT Services
33 Main Street Suite 302
Nashua, New Hampshire 03064

 

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