Ransomwear – a crime against your security!

Have you heard of Ransomwear? It’s basically  a form of malware (malicious software) that holds your business to ransom… that already sounds not cool at all! 


So what happens? 


Cyber criminals take control of your files, photographs, and any other data that’s important to you. They encrypt it, and deny you access until you’ve paid a ransom of their choosing. You’ll know quite clearly if you’ve got ransomware. You’ll be locked out of your computers. And there’ll be a message on your screens telling you to pay a “fine” or the crime gets worse.


Sounds like a bad 90’s action movie… but unfortunately it’s happening to many businesses from small to large, and it could happen to yours if your security isn’t up to scratch. 


The stats speak!


Did you know that:

  • Up to 88% of UK businesses have suffered data breaches in the past 12 months?
  • 1 small UK business is successfully hacked every 19 seconds?
  • These breaches cost an average of £25,700 to clear up?
  • 48% were attacked with ransomware in the last year?
  • 13% of these businesses paid the ransom? 


How does it happen though?


Without you even realising. It’s as simple as an email. More than half of infections occur when someone clicks on a dodgy link in an email. 


That’s not surprising, given that one in every 3,722 emails in the UK is a phishing scam. And 55% of UK email is spam. 


How can you prevent it? 


Bring in the experts – Your IT service provider is a pro at handling these situations and ensuring your company is 100% secure at all times. 


Stay on top of your updates – Yes, it’s a pain, but running all of your updates when they’re due, every time will keep your data safe as houses. Also make sure you’re running the latest version of your security protection software. The same goes for your operating system and all other software or applications that you use. Malware and other types of attack are always evolving and becoming more sophisticated. Your security protection, apps and operating software companies spend huge amounts of money to keep on top of these threats and adjust their software accordingly to keep you safe. 


Beware of emails – spam email is responsible for almost half of cyber-attacks, so be vigilant when it comes to opening unusual emails or clicking on links or attachments that you’re not anticipating. Pay particular attention if an email asks you to enable macros to view its content. If it’s not an email you’re expecting do not enable macros. Delete the email immediately and tell your IT provider asap!


Back up – This is the single most effective way to protect you and your business from data loss. Because even if a cyber-criminal hacks you and encrypts your files, you’ve got another copy of them safely in the cloud. Constantly backing up and checking data means you can access versions from before you were attacked, minimising the chance of reinfection.


Train your team – Investing in IT training for your team means they know what to look out for and have their guard up for any spam type emails, even if they look like the real deal! 


If you think you’ve been targeted then remember:


  • Stay calm
  • Do not pay the ransom
  • Call us straight away 
  • Breathe 


Is your current data security triple locked secure and up to date? If you have any doubt whatsoever, don’t leave yourself with the risk. Get in touch with your friendly, local IT service team (hey!) and get things double checked. You know where to find us


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