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The Growing Threat of Ransomware

Ransomware — a looming threat to the digital environment. This specific malware allows a phisher to lock data access and blackmail the owner in response to free up their data. The sad point over here is it is untraceable. Considering it, then what’s the remedial solution, how to deal with it. Explore to learn.

In the present era, the most prominent threat to businesses is Ransomware. Since 2015, the ransomware attacks have evolved and have become more frequent. Looking at the danger of ransomware governments across the globe to help people understand the issue & how to tackle it. Recently, the US Department of Homeland Security collaborated with Canadian Cyber Incident Response Centre to encourage people to improve network security.

In fact, the two in a joint statement also stated that the infection is so dangerous that as a last resort and final solution you have to count on the service of a trustworthy and dependable Data Recovery specialist.

Tracking the Ransomware Continuous Rise —2015 to 2017

  1. In comparison to April 2015 to March 2016 duration, the total count of infected ransomware users has risen by 11.4% worldwide, i.e. from 2,315,931 to 2,581,026.
  2. In 2016-2017, the encryptors rose proportion has enhanced by 13-6 % in comparison to 2015-2016, i.e. from %. To 44.6%
  3. In contrast to 2015-2016, the total number of cryptor attacked users in 2016-2017 is 1,152,299 (almost twice).
  4. During the first three months of 2016, the U.S. ransomware victims shelled out almost $209 million for their breached data.
  5. In accordance to Ransomware: How Consumers and Businesses Value Their Data IBM report, in 2016, every day almost 4000 ransomware attacks occurred which is nearly four times greater than the previous.

Looking at these or similar stats, it won’t be wrong to state that there is no sign of slowing down. Moving forward, some conclusion drawn from these are:

Findings from Tracking
  • Ransomware attackers are speedily switching to all the unreached areas especially the geographies where users are not well prepared for combating ransomware and where competition is not very high.
  • The most significant threat of ransomware across the globe is that it is targeting financial infrastructure. It is because these targets are potentially more profitable in comparison to private users.
  • Though in comparison to mobile the ransomware on PCs has albeit a slower growth rate yet it is on the rise.
  • Mobile attacks spread mostly with affiliate programs in comparison to malware. While in PC, the case is entirely different. Here malicious actors conduct ad hoc attacks.

Based on these conclusions, you can easily forecast several predictions on its growing threats in the future.

Predictions from Tracking
  • Looking at the ransomware growing competition signs, you can quickly conclude that Ransomware-as-a-Service is becoming more popular each day.
  • Given that, it is growing in diversity and sophistication; it is also providing some ready-to-go solutions to all those who are bounded by fewer resources, skills, or time with their dynamic underground ecosystem.
  • The developing criminal-to-criminal infrastructure is extorting money, making the attack more discrete, and is fueling ad-hoc tools to target more heavily.
  • If you talk about the extortion model, then it is here to stay.

How Can You Prevent Your Business from Ransomware

Ransomware attacks - stellar data recovery

Here are some of the critical approaches using which you can make sure protection against ransomware threats.

  • Generate Backup Periodically

    One of the most significant adverse effects of Ransomware is it can destroy all your data and can demand money to recoup it. But, if you are backing up your data regularly, you can quickly eliminate this threat.

  • Filter Emails

    Emails attached with .exe files is one of the most popular methods to send ransomware and compromise your Enterprise in a fraction of seconds. Thus, if you filter these emails and block .exe attachments, you can protect yourself easily.

  • Make sure to have an updated Network

    As a whole, the significant portion of malware attacks usually happens on the software’s outdated versions. Thus, if you keep your system software and server updated, you can easily protect yourself from threats.

  • Trust Multi-Layered Defense Strategy

    When you have the freedom to count on multi-layer protection then why to stick on one only. You can protect your business through a firewall and a powerful anti-malware software. This smart approach provides you with a double layer of defence no both equipment and network.

Other Hacks
  • Block Ads
  • Limit your access to PHI
  • Conduct risk analysis
  • Categorise your data based on Enterprise value
  • Develop and implement strict policies and procedures
  • Maintain emergency plans as well as disaster recovery plans
  • Restrict permission to high-end networks areas by limiting the number

What to do When Disaster Strikes?

Despite the fact, how well-prepared you are and how secured measures you have incorporated, a single error has potential to cause significant damage. The only course of action here is not to pay the ransom. The reason being, if you pay payment once, you make attacker feel that you are an easy target for them shortly. Moreover, there is no confirmation that attackers have left the access. Perhaps, attackers might have provided you access but have not gone the access themselves.

An effective method is to remove the affected system immediately from the network and backup data.

Ransomware Attraction

Ransomware targets the low-hanging fruit. And, in present digitised environment, Windows is that lowest hanging fruit.  The classic examples are WannaCry and Petya attack.

How does Ransomware work?

Majorly, ransomware infection requires merely a gateway to access your data instead of infiltrating your entire system for long-term access. For this, there is no need for advanced tools. If you talk exclusively about Windows, then it won’t be erroneous to state that it has several default privileges.

Ransomware is insuppressible, looking at the way, it is evolving in volume as well as complexity; it won’t be wrong to state that its growth will also enhance in coming time-frame. The only port of resort to keep yourself secure is to have a close eye on the ransomware evolution & its preventive measures.

If you have already been attacked or are just interested in knowing which service provider you can trust, then connect with us @StellarDataUK

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