With attacks like Petya and WannaCry, ransomware has reared its ugly head again. While a recent threat primarily targeted Windows systems, you should still be vigilant when it comes to suspicious activity on all of your systems. Preventative action by you and your employees can protect your computers and company data from being held by ransomware attackers.
Here are some quick tips for protecting yourself:
Be wary of any unsolicited emails asking you to click on a link, or open an attachment. If it seems suspicious, don’t click it. Doing so could infect not only your computer but whatever network you’re a part of, that’s how malware spreads.
Update your operating system and applications so they have the latest critical patches and/or security fixes. The easiest way to do this is to enable auto-updates. You should check and apply critical software updates on a regular basis to help protect you from future malware outbreaks.
Antivirus software can block malware from downloading and prevent malware from installing on your computer. Make sure you update your antivirus software, and/or signatures, on a regular basis. While antivirus software is not always 100% effective since attackers are constantly developing new methods, you shouldn’t leave the door open for known threats.
Create secure backups of important data to a separate storage device (such as an external hard drive) on a regular basis. You need to physically disconnect your storage device to avoid it from becoming infected with ransomware. Cloud storage (such as Google Drive or Dropbox) is another option. While a cloud service could still be targeted, they have much better resources to respond quickly to an attack. If you have your most important data saved on separate systems then you won’t be at risk of losing your data if you get infected.