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Ransomware just put a NASCAR team on blocks; could a ransomware attack stall your business as well?

August 27, 2016

No matter how fast you are, you simply can’t outrun the threat of ransomware. Earlier this summer, NASCAR’s Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing team was hit with a ransomware attack that locked down their vital racing data, such as chassis information, wind tunnel spreadsheets, simulations, and more.

Raj Goel

As one of the biggest cybercrime threats in the world today, ransomware had become a point of interest for security professionals around the world, including Brainlink’s own Raj Goel. Appearing on CNBC’s On The Money, Raj shared some crucial tips for preventing ransomware altogether:

  • Use a browser with ad blocking (Google Chrome with uBlock Origin is highly recommended).
  • Don’t open invoices from people or companies you don’t do business with, as most ransomware infections arrive via web ads or infected word/xls/zip files. Block the ads and avoid opening trojans to lower your risks.
  • Backup your data on-site and off-site.
  • Test your backups regularly.
  • Create a plan for getting infected, and regularly test your plan.
  • Consult cybersecurity and IT professionals.

Lastly, and most importantly, Raj urged viewers to assume that they WILL get infected. The simple fact is that ransomware-spreading criminal gangs are relentless, so it’s just not enough to try to prevent it; you also need contingencies for when you are infected, such as a comprehensive backup.

For those without backup capability, often your only option is to pay the ransom. But for those with a backup, Raj made further recommendations for how to proceed during a ransomware attack:

  • Immediately disconnect or shutdown the infected computers.
  • Restore any available backed up data to trusted machines.
  • Get appropriate help from an I.T. support provider.

It’s important to note that I.T. security isn’t something you should try to handle on your own. Industry-leaders like Raj know the value of a reliable provider for security technologies, whether for your home or for the office.

Home users are best to choose a trustworthy vendor such as Crashplan, Carbonite or Backblaze for their data backup, and free antivirus software from Sophos Home.

On the professional side, Raj recommends firewall technology with Sophos’ Unified Threat Management, while also noting others such as Juniper, Palo Alto and Checkpoint. Furthermore, Datto provides an industry-leading Backup and Disaster Recovery service, and Sophos is the clear choice for antivirus, with their Endpoint with Synchronized Security offering.

Want to learn more about preventing and responding to ransomware? Check out the On The Money interview, and find out more:

Don’t wait until after your files are encrypted to start taking ransomware seriously. Get in touch with Raj today at (917) 685-7731 or raj@brainlink.com to talk about ransomware prevention and backup capability for your business.

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