71% of ransomware attacks in 2018 targeted small to medium-sized U.S. businesses. So the question is, are you effectively protecting your business and its data?
If not, we want to inform you today on the importance of protecting your data from malware, the effects it can have on your business, and how you can best protect your business ongoing. Awareness is the first step.
Ransomware may sound like something from a Mission Impossible movie but it is a real and serious threat in the business world. Ransomware is a type of malware or virus that prevents a business from accessing or retrieving its own data until you pay the attacker a sum of money.
How Ransomware Can Affect Your Business
The impacts of a ransomware attack to your company could include the following:
- Temporary to possibly permanent loss of your company’s data
- A complete shutdown of your company’s operations for an extended period of time
- A loss in revenue due to loss of productivity in operations
- Potential financial loss associated with the downtown or remediation efforts
- Damages to your business’s reputation.
So not only can it negatively affect your operations, it can damage your professional image for the foreseeable future. It’s also possible that your computer systems will become infected with other forms of malware after a successful attack occurs.
Victims can lose their data for 1-5 days before being able to remediate. And paying the ransom to the attacker does not guarantee the data will be returned. In fact, it could encourage them to take further advantage of you. That’s why, by government mandate, you are not advised to pay a ransomware attacker. Of the number of businesses in 2018 who paid the requested funds after experiencing ransomware, 1 in 5 never got their data back.
How Does Ransomware Happen?
The infection within your computer often begins through malicious spam emails, especially when you click on attachments that may look legitimate but are not. You may not know the moment ransomware hits your computer system. Or you could see a pop-up on your computer screen notifying you of a ransomware infection.
A typical message used during a malware attack may look like the following:
“All files on your computer systems have been encrypted. You must pay this ransom within 48 hours to regain access to your data.”
The attacker will request money via credit card or cryptocurrency.
Here are the main steps you should take if you see a message confirming ransomware on your computer:
- Do not attempt to pay the requested ransom money.
- Contact a trusted IT professional –hopefully our team at Axiom–for access to security products that remediate and remove the threat.
Hyperlink the image above with this link for citing- https://www.malwarebytes.com/
Why Your Business Should Stay Vigilant About Ransomware
In August 2019, there was a ransomware attack on DDS Safe, a data backup system frequently used within the dental industry, that prevented over 400 dental offices around the United States from accessing their patients’ records.
These stories and statistics collected in recent years clearly show the severity of ransomware. However, most businesses are unaware and ill-equipped to handle a ransomware attack or execute the best practices to prevent them.
The estimated average total costs of damages associated with ransomware attacks for 2019 was $11.5 billion. Cybersecurity Ventures predicted that a new business would become a victim to ransomware every 11 seconds in 2021. This is a frightening thought for business owners, employees, and clients of those businesses who have entrusted these companies with private data and sensitive information.
You don’t want to risk your business operations, reputation, and more. Avoid what could be crippling financial loss. Take the proper precautions now to prevent the harm of ransomware on your business.
It’s Time to Protect Your Business
At Axiom Solutions, it is our mission to keep our clients protected from ransomware and other attacks through a suite of IT solutions to ensure your business and data are secure. Learn more about our security solutions and how our team can help you remain safe in the new year today.