Businesses face a lot of threats, but ransomware stands out amongst them all. It’s certainly one of the scariest threats out there, as it seems we need to include it every time we discuss cyberthreats. Unfortunately, we really do need to, for one simple reason.
Ransomware Hurts, and Then Keeps Hurting
Ransomware is one of those threats that doesn’t stop creating difficulties for the business it infects. Let’s walk through the steps that a ransomware attack typically takes, and how each of them winds up impacting the business.
- Ransomware often starts with an attacker communicating with their target, utilizing a phishing attack in order to access the target’s device, or even their network.
- Once access has been granted, it begins encrypting all the data it can. This leaves it inaccessible to the user, sometimes barring access to their systems completely, stifling or completely hindering their productivity.
- It isn’t uncommon for data to also be stolen, with the attacker either putting it to use in other scams and attacks or selling it on the Dark Web.
- The attacker then reaches out, informing their victim of the situation they are in and demanding a ransom in exchange for their data. If payment isn’t received, the system is wiped.
- While this is going on, the target of the attack is left unable to do their work, stuck in some level of downtime and unable to make money.
- If the target elects to pay the extremely expensive ransom, there’s nothing to say that their data or systems will be restored.
- In order to clear out the infection, the target needs to completely wipe their data storage and infrastructure. With any luck, they have a backup to restore from, but if they don’t they’ll need to start over… if not behind the eight ball.
- As the cherry on top, the downtime caused by the ransomware will have interrupted the services and potentially stolen client data from the target, potentially destroying the trust the community has in the infected business.
With all said, outside of the infection, you could potentially do everything right as you deal with ransomware—from maintaining a backup, immediately implementing said backup, and prioritizing open communication with anyone who could have had their data impacted—and still wind up losing in some way.
This is Precisely Why Ransomware is to be Avoided
So, while ransomware is a costly cyberattack to experience, it can also last a very long time. Your best course of action is to avoid it, preventing it however possible, and establishing the protections that will otherwise help you keep it away. The aforementioned backups, along with the user training that will help prevent successful phishing attacks and other means of infecting your business, can all make your business better prepared to make it through such an event.
We can help you implement all of these protections, as well as others to protect your business from the other threats it will face. Reach out at 216.397.4080to discuss your options with us.