What are some Ransomware Preventions you should always keep in mind?

Cyber SecurityAnti VirusSafe & Security

What is a Ransomware?

Ransomware is a virus that encrypts data in exchange for a ransom payment. It has the ability to cause significant harm as a means of assault. Ransomware is commonly disseminated through phishing emails, but it can also be spread by drive-by downloading that arises when a user visits an infected website. Advanced assaults penetrate endpoints in seconds, and ransomware attacks harm your systems and infrastructure in seconds. As ransomware assaults get more sophisticated, the consequences go beyond financial losses and lost productivity caused by downed systems.

Attempts at attacks and data breaches are unavoidable, and no company wants to be forced to choose between paying a ransom and losing critical information. Thankfully, those aren't your only choices. Avoiding being forced to make that decision in the first place is the best course of action. This strategy necessitates a tiered security model that combines proactive global threat intelligence-driven network, endpoint, application, and data-center controls. With that in mind, examine the following nine factors to provide your company with the best chance of avoiding ransomware attacks.

Crypto-viruses, crypto-Trojans, and crypto-worms are all terms used to describe Ransomware.

Businesses can be badly harmed by ransomware attacks, leaving hospitals and municipalities without the data they use to function and offer mission-critical services. According to the FBI, ransomware instances will continue to climb in 2021, while cyberattacks focusing on business email compromise (BEC) and email account attacks will have a far more significant financial impact.

The FBI is examining more than 100 ransomware variations, including one from the DarkSide cybercriminal gang. DarkSide has made headlines for giving non-technical criminal associates Ransomware as a service (RaaS) agreements in exchange for a percentage of the paid ransom.

The Most Common Methods of Ransomware Infection

Let's check the most common methods that cybercriminals use to carry out a ransomware attack.

Phishing

Phishing refers to assaults in which hackers attempt to steal sensitive information from victims.

Phishing is the act of sending hundreds or thousands of forged emails in the hopes that one of the recipients would read them and click on a link to a credential-stealing website, allowing the sender to obtain personal information. Spear-phishing adds a layer of sophistication to the scamming process − no more naively entering a system; instead, you hit, grasp, and slide your way in.

Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) and Credentials Abuse

The Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) has been used to infiltrate and attack computers and networks since 2016. Malicious cyber actors, often known as hackers, have discovered methods for detecting and exploiting weak RDP connections via the Internet to steal identities and login credentials and install and execute ransomware attacks on a victim's machine.

RDP is a network protocol that allows someone to control a computer linked to the Internet remotely. The remote person sees everything on the computer screen they're using, and their keyboard and mouse behave precisely like those physically connected to the remote machine.

For a remote desktop connection between local and remote workstations, authentication via username and password is required. Cybercriminals may gain access to the devices' connection, allowing them to infect the remote system with malware or Ransomware. Because attacks using the RDP protocol do not require the victim's input, they are challenging to detect.

Vulnerabilities

In MITRE's vulnerability categorization methodology, zero-day vulnerabilities are classified as a Common Vulnerability Exposure (CVE) (CVE). A cyberattack that successfully exploits a vulnerability can execute malicious code, install malware, and even steal sensitive data from the victim's machine.

SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), and the usage of open-source exploit kits, which scan online programs for reported vulnerabilities and security issues, are some of the ways weaknesses can be exploited.

A number of flaws in widely used programs have been discovered, exposing a large number of users to the danger of data loss or supply chain attack.

How to Prevent a Ransomware Attack?

In this section, let's discuss the actions and precautions that you should take to prevent a ransomware attack −

Email attachments should be handled with extreme caution

Any questionable email attachment should trigger a warning from your antivirus program. However, don't take this information at face value because email communications can be readily modified to appear as genuine notices from your bank, credit card company, or any other reliable source, including a coworker or friend.

Check the sender's address, not simply the sender's name, before opening a file attached to a message because the latter can be forged. Check if the address's domain name (the part after the "@") is correct. If the name is unusual and has no meaning, delete the mail right away.

The riskiest attachments are application components, such as EXE (executable) or DLL (dynamic link library) files. So, if you notice one of these files attached to a mail, pay special attention. Any file associated with an application that opens it automatically, on the other hand, is potentially harmful. As a result, it's a good idea to never double-click on the connected files. Permanently save it to a folder and then run it with an antivirus program.

Do not click on a link in the body of an email.

It may be too late once you've done it. If you must click on that enticing link, hover your mouse pointer (if you're using a computer) over it to see where it will lead you. You can tap on the link and hold your finger pressed to see the real URL behind the link if you're using a phone or tablet. If it doesn't match the link content, don't click on it and ignore the confusing warning.

When using unfamiliar external drives or USB sticks, be cautious.

If you need to copy files from an external storage device given to you, don't let it connect automatically. Request the location of the files you require, then copy them (and nothing else) to a temporary folder on your device where you may scan them for malware before usage. Do not double-click on the files or allow them to open or play automatically, as you would with email attachments.

Updating your software is essential.

It's critical that all of the software you use comes from reputable sources and is always up to date. Changelogs (sometimes known as "What's new" displays or documents) might be challenging to read, but they contain essential information about what the developer did to address security issues and vulnerabilities.

Read them all the way through to figure out what difficulties they solved.

On social media, be cautious

Ransomware can spread as quickly as a zombie infection through social media. We all enjoy sharing any stuff we find interesting with our pals. We do it with the greatest of intentions, but it could be a dangerous way to spread malware. If a buddy offers you a link to something you "need" to download, install, or watch, be cautious − your friend may be already infected, and the Ransomware is attempting to deceive you into allowing it into your system.

Always double-check anything you get through social media. Even something as simple as seeing a video of kittens interacting with puppies can end up costing you a lot of money.

Make sure your antivirus and firewall are up to date

Read reviews and comparisons to ensure that you have the finest antivirus and firewall software installed. Ransomware should be removed as soon as it tries to break into your machine. Almost all modern antivirus programs include some behavior tracking. Instead of looking for recognized threat patterns, some focus solely on detecting harmful activity. As the usefulness of this behavior-based strategy is demonstrated, it is becoming increasingly widely used.

Some security applications try to prevent ransomware attacks by restricting unauthorized access to specific locations on a computer, such as the desktop or the documents folder. Any attempt by an unknown software to get access triggers a warning message, offering the user the option to allow or refuse the entry.

Make a complete backup

Many folks realize they don't have a proper backup strategy when it's too late. Damaged media, corrupted backup data, and complicated restore procedures that take too long or require too many people are the most common backup issues.

Your backups may be useless if you find backup issues after a ransomware assault. A good backup strategy should allow you to travel back in time and restore your data to that point in time. You must first determine the exact date on which the infection started and then restore from a backup older than that date.

A quick data recovery procedure must accompany a solid data backup. It's also critical that a data backup provides granular and straightforward file recovery so you can get back to work with your data quickly. Consider using a cloud backup service if you don't want to bother with backup schedules, media, rotation, or other problems. There are numerous online backup solutions, each with its features and prices. Keep in mind that the service you'll be paying for will relieve you of a lot of worries and protect you from a lot of dangers.

raja
Updated on 30-May-2022 10:20:30

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