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5 Essential Steps to Safeguard Your Data From Ransomware

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To mitigate ransomware attacks, organizations should regularly perform vulnerability assessments and maintain, test, and uphold practices for disaster recovery. They should also implement network segmentation to limit the spread of an infection from one device to another.

Other defenses against malware include:

  • Not clicking on suspicious links.
  • Avoiding unknown USB devices.
  • Conducting regular cybersecurity training for employees.

Update Your Antivirus Software

Antivirus programs can help prevent ransomware attacks only if they’re kept up-to-date. Many antivirus software vendors provide automatic updates, but it’s also a good idea to check regularly to ensure the latest features are in place. This can protect against the newest threats and ensure the program works as efficiently as possible.

Another way to on how to prevent ransomware is by blocking unauthorized access to your system. This can be done by implementing tools that can scan for malware and by educating employees on the importance of avoiding phishing emails and other common infection methods.

Once an infection has occurred, it’s important to immediately disconnect all devices from the network and take steps to contain the outbreak. Ideally, the infected systems should be wiped clean and restored to their original state to no longer be vulnerable. It’s also important to ensure that backups are protected so that they can’t be locked by ransomware, which is why it’s a good idea to store them offline or in a cloud environment that isn’t accessible to attackers.

Install an Anti-Malware Program

Using a layered approach to cybersecurity is important, which means installing and updating multiple tools. This includes antivirus software, anti-malware programs, cloud data loss prevention, and spam filters. You should also scan systems, files, and removable storage devices every week to catch any malicious code before it can damage your data.

Ransomware is a malware type that infiltrates an organization, encrypts files and demands a ransom payment to restore access. It’s one of the fastest-growing forms of cybercrime and can cost an organization millions of dollars in damages.

To prevent an attack, implement user training to teach your employees how to identify phishing emails and other threats. You should also back up your data and consider using a cloud service that stores previous versions of files so you can roll back to an unencrypted state in the event of an infection. Also, be sure to test backups regularly to ensure they’re working. Isolating infected devices is also essential, as the longer a device remains connected to your network, the more likely it will spread.

Backup Your Data

Whether it’s family vacation photos, a term paper, or confidential business information, everyone has data that they value and don’t want to lose. Unfortunately, technological disasters happen due to weather, hardware failure, or cybercrime like ransomware. An effective backup plan is the best way to prevent the disruption and loss of data in the aftermath of such events.

Data backups are one of the most important controls that an organization can implement to mitigate long-term damage following a ransomware attack. In an infection, restoring data from a clean backup eliminates the need to pay a ransom to regain access to compromised files and systems.

Backup solutions should be stored on a physical hard drive or server that is offline and out-of-band from your network to ensure that cybercriminals cannot reach them. Additionally, password restrictions are recommended to limit the number of people accessing your backups, reducing the risk of human error. 

Install a Firewall

Firewalls protect against ransomware by examining data packets that are sent across the network at the application layer to detect malware. They also help identify and block traffic from compromised websites or software downloads. They can also prevent access to folders where malicious programs like malware or adware are located.

In addition, firewalls can monitor key indicators of a ransomware attack and alert personnel so that the problem can be quickly stopped. Likewise, policies can be put in place that prevent certain types of attachments from being downloaded or opened, and sandboxing solutions can be used to analyze dangerous files before they are allowed to enter the network.

It is important to regularly update your firewall solution to ensure that it has the best protection against ransomware attacks. Similarly, employees should be educated about the dangers of opening emails and downloading files. They should also be restricted from having local administrative privileges since some forms of ransomware require the attacker to run with system administrator rights to encrypt the user’s files.

Install a Backup Solution

When protecting data from ransomware, a backup solution is your most important tool. Regularly saving files to external media or a cloud-based storage system will protect your business from data loss in a ransomware attack.

Make sure that you backup your data at least once a day. This will ensure that you can recover from a ransomware attack quickly.

Another best practice is to keep an air-gapped backup of your data. This means the backups are stored on a separate device disconnected from your network. This will prevent ransomware from encrypting the backups, as it can only attack files it can see.

Testing your backups regularly to ensure they are working properly is also a good idea. Additionally, consider implementing immutable file storage to provide an extra layer of protection against ransomware. This will ensure the backups are never infected, even when a new malware version is discovered. This will allow your team to roll back to an unencrypted backup version in case of an infection.


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