Ransomware is when cybercriminals are able to hijack a computer and prevent the owner accessing its contents and data unless they pay a fee. It has become an increasingly sophisticated crime over the last few years and costs small businesses in the UK, hundreds of thousands of pounds. According to the latest statistics, over half of malware attacks nowadays contain some kind of ransomware.
Ransomware has grown quickly because of its success rate. With malware hidden in email attachments and downloads, small businesses are particularly vulnerable, often because of a lack of staff awareness.
Recommended steps to protect your business from ransomware
- Every small business should have an IT security policy in place and educate staff about the perils of opening attachments, especially from unsolicited emails. Never open anything or click on an attachment when you don’t know the sender.
- IT security software should always be kept up to date, installing security patches and reducing the chance of ransomware exploiting a software vulnerability.
- Backing up lies at the heart of any secure IT system. We recommend all our clients have at least two back-up systems in place, one in the cloud and the other a secure ‘on premise’ solution.
Although procedures can be put in place and the necessary steps taken to reduce the threat of ransomware, due to the nature of IT security, no IT support provider can guarantee complete protection from a cyber-attack. Ultimately whilst we endeavour to protect our clients from all known threats, it is impossible to mitigate against every eventuality. For further information regarding reducing the risk from ransomware threats, please speak to a member of the M2 Computing team on 0845 034 2150.