Cybercrime is a problem that is growing rapidly in the United States. According to a National Cyber Security Alliance study, cybercrime cost the U.S. economy more than $445 billion in 2014. This cost is expected to continue to grow, and this year, billions of dollars are still stolen by these criminals.
The main types of cybercrime affecting businesses in the U.S. are identity theft, data breaches, and ransomware.
Identity theft occurs when criminals use your personal information to commit fraud, such as your Social Security number or credit card number. Data breaches happen when hackers gain access to sensitive information, such as customer data or trade secrets. Finally, ransomware is malware that puts a person’s files at risk unless they ransom the attacker. Among the many forms of cybercrime, ransomware is the most dangerous for businesses.
Ransomware attacks are on the rise, and they are becoming more sophisticated. In the past, these attacks were primarily targeted at individuals. However, now businesses are being targeted as well. According to a report, ransomware attacks against companies have increased by 300 percent since 2015.
Businesses are being targeted more frequently because they have more money to pay the ransom. The average ransom demanded from companies is $10,000, while the average ransom required from individuals is only $300.
These attacks can be devastating for businesses. They can result in critical data loss, downtime, and reputational damage. In some cases, companies have had to close down entirely because of a ransomware attack.
How to Protect Your Business From Ransomware
There are a few things that you can do to protect your business from ransomware:
Keep your software up to date
The software you use in your company is critical. You need to ensure that all of your software is up to date, including your operating system, web browser, and any plugins or extensions you use. By keeping your software up to date, you can patch any security vulnerabilities.
Use a firewall
A firewall is a critical piece of security hardware that helps to protect your network from attacks. A good firewall will block incoming traffic from known malicious IP addresses.
Your IP plays a massive role in prepping your business for a ransomware attack. By ensuring you have a firewall in place, you’re making it much harder for hackers to get through your system. Moreover, you ensure that no other attacks can happen to your company.
The way your website also looks matters. If your website is outdated or has security vulnerabilities, it can be an easy target for attackers. Ensure that your website is up to date and uses the latest security measures. It might be good for you to hire an experienced web design service to make a better website for you. They will know what kind of website can deter hackers and ransomware.
Educate your employees
Your employees are a critical part of your company’s defense against ransomware. They need to be aware of the dangers of clicking on unknown links or opening email attachments from unknown sources. You should also have a policy in place for dealing with suspicious emails.
Install antivirus software
Antivirus software is another essential layer of security for your business. This software will scan all of the files on your computer and look for any that are infected with malware. If infected files are found, it will remove them from your system.
There are many different antiviruses to choose from, so you need to find one right for your business. Some things you should consider when choosing an antivirus are the size of your company, the types of devices you use, and the level of protection you need.
Make regular backups
One of the most important things you can do to protect your business from ransomware is to make regular data backups. This way, if your data is ever encrypted by ransomware, you will be able to restore it from your backup.
There are many different ways to back up your data, such as using an external hard drive, a cloud-based service, or a backup server. But, first, you need to find the best method for your company.
Hire a professional
If you are not familiar with cybersecurity, it might be a good idea to hire a professional to help you. Cybersecurity specialists can help you assess your risks and put the best security measures for your business.
Ransomware is a severe threat to businesses. However, you can protect your business from this type of attack by taking the proper precautions.
Ensure that you keep your software up to date, use a firewall, and install antivirus software. You should also educate your employees about the dangers of clicking on unknown links and making regular data backups. If you are not familiar with cybersecurity, it might be a good idea to hire a professional to help you.