Ransomware in Calgary – Its Impact and How to Protect Yourself
Ransomware is a sensitive topic that businesses, institutions, and individuals cannot afford to ignore. Like most computer viruses, the malicious software can access your data by exploiting security vulnerabilities then hold it for ransom using encryption.
The purpose of ransomware is extortion with the promise to restore the data. The attacks usually target high-profile victims such as public learning institutions, hospitals, or police departments. However, they’re now finding their way into businesses of all sizes and personal computers.
This article has everything you need to know about the impact of ransomware in Calgary and the best practices to protect yourself.
The Impact of Ransomware on Your Business
There have been numerous successful ransomware incidences in the last few years. In 2018, for instance, the University of Calgary had to pay $20,000 after their computer systems experienced a ransomware attack. According to the institution, the attackers locked their computer networks and demanded the fee before offering the decryption keys. This is just one of the numerous reported incidences.
Addressing a ransomware attack aftermath is like playing Russian roulette. The most obvious solution would be to submit the ransom right away. However, you’re not assured of getting your captured business data back or in the same condition it was in initially. Also, remember that the threat evolves, and the individuals are now stealing data from victims who fail to comply.
Ransomware attacks of today don’t care about the nature of your business – everyone is a target. So it’s not enough to detect an attack in progress. Rather, the primary focus should be on early prevention and avoidance.
Practical Tips to Avoid Ransomware and Other Similar Threats
Here are some of the essential best practices to protect your business from ransomware and other cybersecurity threats.
Practice Continuous Cybersecurity Training
A majority of data exposure and breaches result from human factors. Apart from the commonly reported phishing scams, there have been numerous reported cases of staff threatening their companies due to spite, boredom, or any other personal reasons. But the underlying factor is that the success of these attacks is mostly attributed to human error.
Failure to create an awareness culture or ensure staff deeply understand the best practices is dangerous. Without the appropriate cyber literacy, any firewall protection or mitigation solution will be of no use. Threats push through due to mistakes of the people within. So always communicate to your staff the available threats and the potential impact of these attacks on the company. It will help if every employee acknowledges that cybersecurity their responsibility, and you can always keep them updated through regular training sessions and seminars.
It’s also essential to create specific regulations that govern the use of mobile devices, social networks, email, and internet browsing. Finally, train them how they can identify and counter ransomware or any other attack.
Invest in The Right Solutions
With numerous companies advertising their cybersecurity solutions and services, it might be hard to find a company that best suits your needs. But you cannot afford to leave your systems vulnerable. Cyber threats come in diverse forms, and the issues to which you’re trying to find a solution are finite. As such, it would help if you choose the right cybersecurity solutions to keep you safe from ransomware and other threats.
To get the right tools, you must first be clear about the different issues you intend to address. Make decisions based on honest insights. Can your staff sufficiently handle cybersecurity on-premise? Ask yourself whether your team is skilled enough to fix all the risks you’re facing. This way, you’ll know what you have and everything else you need to secure your systems.
Prioritize Business Continuity
You can never really tell when ransomware will hit you. Cyber-threats come in diverse forms, and attackers are always on the lookout for vulnerabilities. With a reliable business continuity strategy in place, emergencies will always find you ready, and none of your operations will be disrupted.
A continuity strategy will keep you functional during and after the attack, and you’ll recover really fast. You’ll be in a position to mitigate your financial exposure and risks, develop client trust, and safeguard the company’s reputation. A continuity plan will also nurture confidence within the organization and keep you compliant with legal and regulatory requirements.
To establish a robust business continuity plan, you must first assess the cybersecurity risk your company faces. You’ll then complete a business impact analysis that will aid the creation of the business continuity plan. Afterward, you’ll proceed with strategy and plan development, then complete the process with testing and maintenance.
Outsource A Reliable IT Company
Successful on-premise cybersecurity teams require a combination of technology, intelligence, and security expertise. But most companies can neither facilitate nor manage this. While you can handle the job yourself, outsourcing your cybersecurity functions to a third-party is a viable solution.
Here are the different ways in which hiring an expert would benefit your company
- Time efficiency – When addressing the day-to-day operations like managing clients, suppliers, and employees, there’s a high likelihood of overlooking cybersecurity. But when you hire an expert, you’ll be relieved and find time to take care of other facets of your daily operations.
- Expertise – Outsourcing your IT means you’ll be working with an industry specialist with the right resources and skills to address all your cybersecurity concerns. What’s more, these agencies are aware of common threats and current trends and can aptly guide you on the right solutions to keep your networks and data safe.
- Monitoring around the clock – Attackers are busy throughout the day, whether or not during office hours. They could be in any remote location in a different time zone and are likely to pass by when no one is there to man your systems. When you work with a third-party partner, they’ll monitor your systems 24/7 and respond anytime there’s a threat.
- Professionalism – Investing in an IT provider is a professional move by itself. Not only does it portray you as an experienced industry player, but your partners and clients will also always consider you to be up to date with ransomware and other threats.
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CTECH consulting group can help you realize cutting-edge IT and cybersecurity solutions to protect your Calgary-based company. We’re not just another IT provider in this location. We’re more focused on ensuring businesses, health facilities, institutions, and individuals overcome hurdles, boost efficiency, increase their bottom line, and create a robust IT culture by leveraging technology.
We’re always ready to listen and address your concerns, so don’t hesitate to connect with us today.
My passion is to make my mark on the world in a positive and lasting way. I want to set an example for my son that his father can compete with integrity in today’s world, be very successful, and leave the world a better place for him.
Combining my technical/business-based education with a long career steadily progressing up the corporate ladder, I decided to build a company that held true to my values. So, I founded and designed the next generation of IT support firm: CTECH Consulting Group Inc. We are a completely automated, cloud-based IT company designed to compete against any other IT firm without the overhead. We promote a lifestyle to all our staff where they can work anywhere, at any time, access any information on any device that is relevant to their job, and collaborate with anyone they want to.