There’s good news and bad news in the cybersecurity giant Symantec’s most recent report on internet threats. And it confirms a pattern that I’ve been increasingly concerned about in recent months, so much so that I wanted to share some important advice and guidance with you.
The good news is that, for the first time since 2013, the overall number of ransomware attacks is in decline. The bad news is that the volume of attacks on consumers is falling because attacks on businesses are rising, up 12% in 2018. Businesses are now the victims of more than 80% of all successful ransomware infections, with bogus emails the cybercriminals’ weapon of choice.
And ransomware is very bad news indeed, blocking users from accessing their computers or files until they pay a ransom to cybercriminals. It’s all too easy where you or I could simply open an email attachment and innocently allow a crypto virus into our network regardless of whether you have anti-virus protection or not. The reason why anti-virus protection is not always enough is complex, but the bottom line is that the criminals can be a step ahead, spreading far and fast before the anti-virus protections have caught up. The costs of recovery can be huge – and potentially fatal, especially for SMEs for whom the loss of data and interruption to customer service, for even a few hours, would have catastrophic results. So, first and foremost, think of backup solutions as an insurance policy. In a nutshell, it’s vital that all of your valuable data is backed up in a safe and secure location, out of the reach of even the most determined thieves.
Symantec’s report reveals that a key reason that attacks on consumers is declining is because consumers are increasingly using mobile devices with their essential data backed up in the cloud.
And this highlights a key vulnerability for many businesses. Onsite backup can be just as vulnerable to the same infection as live systems. This is because once criminals have access to your onsite network they may also get access to your onsite backups. The answer is a secure and managed offsite backup solution. First, ask yourself these key questions about your data and backup arrangements:
- Do you know exactly what data you hold – about your customers, your employees, your business, your suppliers, your finances, your products and services?
- How and where is it stored, and how is it secured?
- Do you back it up, how, and how often?
- What would happen if you suddenly lost access to your live data and onsite backups, whether through a ransomware attack, or a flood or fire in your office?
- How long would it be before this became a serious issue for you – minutes, hours, days?
- How often do you review your backup arrangements? As your business develops, and therefore your needs change, so will your data backup requirements. Therefore, it is essential to periodically review your backup solutions.
Another worrying statistic: of 81% of ransomware victims confident that their backup would enable complete recovery, only 42% succeeded! So ACT TODAY and put the right backup arrangements in place, so when the worst does happen recovering your systems and data is possible.
If you’d like a backup review and an informal and confidential chat about your options to ensure you are protected adequately, call us on 03300 886116 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Director, The PC Support Group