Ransomware on the Rise: Protect Yourself Before It’s Too Late

Ransomware attack

Ransomware attacks have returned with force. Following a slight decrease in 2022, there was a notable increase witnessed in 2023, with hackers starting to focus their attacks on critical infrastructure, hospitals, schools, and common businesses. Presently, these kinds of assaults are the topmost danger for firms across the globe, regardless of their scale or size.

Without regular network penetration testing, companies risk shutting down, hospitals may be forced to turn away patients, and essential services could grind to a halt, impacting entire communities. From local governments to worldwide manufacturers, hackers have been focusing on organisations with network weaknesses in every sector. Furthermore, the security threat grows as many new forms of ransomware keep appearing on the internet each week.

What is Ransomware?

Ransomware, a kind of malware, encrypts the data on a victim’s computer or network. The person who does this wants payment to give back access to files and systems. Usually, after paying ransom money, the victim gets a decryption key for their files. If the victim doesn’t pay the demanded amount as ransom, then the threat actor can either publish it on data leak sites (DLS) or keep blocking access to files indefinitely.

As per the cybersecurity experts at Cybernetic Global Intelligence “The growth of Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) model increases the likelihood of these attacks being attempted by less experienced cybercriminals, thereby reducing the skills barrier. This suggests that everybody, ranging from individuals to big companies, must stay cautious and ready.”

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Types of Ransomware

1. Encrypting Ransomware

In this situation, the ransomware encrypts files on the computer’s hard drive one by one. It becomes tough to decrypt them unless you pay for a decryption key with money. For payment, they request BitCoin, SecurePay, eWay, or a pre-paid (debit) card.

2. Screen Lockers

Lockers are like real lockers; they fully lock your computer or system and make it impossible for you to access files and applications. They show a ransom demand on the lock screen, possibly including a countdown clock to increase urgency.

3. Scareware

This is where a popup appears to trick the person into believing they have a virus. It then gives them directions to download fake software that will solve their problem, but this is actually false and may even be a virus itself.

The Top Ways to Protect Your Data

Check out the top ways that you should use to protect your data and keep ransomware attacks at bay.

Disaster Mitigation and Recovery Solutions

Ransomware not only encrypts all files on a device but also every piece of data within the network. This implies that any backup systems linked to your network are at risk too. If there is an attack by ransomware on your network, you won’t be able to recover data from those backups. The answer? Utilise double-network backup systems, both onsite and offsite, to shield backups from any problems in the network.

If the backup systems at your location are also encrypted, then you can restore network operations with the offsite backups. The good news is, even if all your data gets encrypted by ransomware, having strong backups means you can restore your systems without paying a ransom. Redundant backups act as a safety net, giving you peace of mind even during a recovery process. Though having many backup systems might cost more to run, these additional expenses are quickly recouped in case of an attack by ransomware.

Security Awareness Training

Advanced firewalls and next-level antimalware software can only help you to a certain extent in your battle against ransomware. This is because these strategies may not guard against human mistakes. If your desire is for an organisation that takes every possible action to defend its operations from a ransomware attack, it becomes necessary that you introduce continuous security awareness training policies. Training on security awareness doesn’t just help your team detect security threats; it also equips them with skills to react efficiently before threats disrupt normal work.

Deploy Automated Surveillance Solutions

As ransomware attacks continue to rise, cybersecurity developers are creating network monitoring tools that can halt these threats. A system with constant automated supervision of network operations is a key component of ransomware monitoring platforms. It utilises intelligent scanning of files and folders as well as online movements to guarantee no malware enters your network.

Penetration and Vulnerability Testing

If you wish to clarify the strengths and drawbacks of your network, then teaming up with cybersecurity professionals to perform intense penetration and vulnerability tests could be the perfect way. Your security consultants will try to exploit your network in a similar manner as a cybercriminal would, aiming at identifying its weak spots and strengthening them against certain risks.

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Collaborate With Expert Cybersecurity Consultants

Cybernetic Global Intelligence offers comprehensive network penetration testing services to help businesses identify and address security gaps before they’re compromised. Our team of certified experts will simulate various attack scenarios, uncovering vulnerabilities in your network infrastructure, applications, and security protocols. This valuable information allows you to prioritise remediation efforts and bolster your defences against evolving threats like ransomware.

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Contact Cybernetic Global Intelligence today to discuss your network penetration testing needs and build a robust defence against ransomware attacks.

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