You may have received an innocent-looking email. Something that feels official. Like a bill, or an account update, or your bank’s notice. It looks legit. But once you open it, a ransomware takes control over your computer, demanding a sum of money in exchange for your data.
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It seems that nobody is immune to this menace: businesses and government agencies have been affected. Just recently, several police departments nationwide have been reportedly affected by the ransomware/malware, and were not able to bypass the ransom demand and had to pay up in order to retrieve their data.
OPM (Office of Personnel Management), was the breach in April, putting federal employees records at risk. Link:
Individuals, businesses and local government agencies alike should practice cybersecurity to minimize potential damage.
Here are a few steps that can make it harder for criminals to get a hold of your data:
- Manage internet and especially email security and validate potential threats.
- Enforce strict security policies, including user authentication.
- Continuously train and inform your employees on the red flags of a potential breach.
- Trust, but verify: take advantage of user activity monitoring.
- Ensure your systems have up-to-date firewall and malware/spyware/anti-virus software programs.
- Maintain your industry-specific compliance.
- Define and follow data breach response plan.
Here is one of the most important tips:
- Don’t assume it wouldn’t happen to you!
Remember, these criminals are experts at social engineering – they use proven methodology to design their emails, and web pages in the way that would trigger a response, so people open their emails, click on their links, and fall prey to the ransomware.
What steps have you taken to improve your cyber security?
Incidents like these remind us of the importance of professional data and network security measures, backup and recovery protocols, as well as having proper policies, especially when identity-sensitive data is being involved.
Small Businesses can prevent data, password, and credit card theft, computer malware and viruses, e-mail scams, and phishing.
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If you are looking for a reliable, professional IT security experts and tech support company in New Jersey, we can certainly help.