Ransomware threats to small businesses become very common in the last few years.
With the rapid advancement of technology, ransomware attacks have become a significant concern for businesses of all sizes. Although large corporations often make the headlines, small businesses are equally at risk. Contrary to popular belief, small businesses are not immune to these attacks, and ignoring the threat can be detrimental. In this article, we will examine the staggering statistics that illustrate the vulnerabilities of small businesses and provide essential defense measures to safeguard against ransomware attacks. At InfoDefense PLUS, we are demystifying common delusion: “I am a small business, and they will never attack me.”
Small businesses comprise 99.9% of all companies in the United States, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. This widespread presence makes them a prime target for cybercriminals seeking to exploit potential vulnerabilities. Accenture’s 2019 Cost of Cybercrime Study reveals that 43% of cyber attacks target small businesses, yet only 14% of these businesses feel adequately prepared to defend themselves.
To protect against ransomware attacks, small businesses should implement the following defense measures:
REGULAR DATA BACKUP
Regular and automated backups to secure offsite locations ensure that organizations can restore critical data without succumbing to ransom demands in case of a ransom attack.
The importance of the backups we already discussed in our previous post, THE NECESSITY OF IMMUTABLE BACKUPS IN TODAY’S CYBERSECURITY LANDSCAPE
UPDATE SOFTWARE REGULARLY
Keeping software and operating systems up to date is a simple yet effective defense tactic. By patching known vulnerabilities, businesses can significantly reduce the risk of falling victim to ransomware.
EMPLOYEE TRAINING AND AWARENESS
Conduct regular employee training sessions to educate staff about ransomware threats and train them to identify suspicious emails, links, and attachments.
STRENGTHEN PASSWORD POLICIES
Enforcing strong password policies and promoting multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds an extra layer of security to prevent unauthorized access.
DEPLOY FIREWALLS AND ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE
Installing and maintaining firewalls and reliable antivirus software aids in detecting and blocking potential ransomware threats.
LIMIT ADMINISTRATIVE ACCESS
Restricting access to sensitive information and systems to authorized personnel minimizes the risk of unauthorized access and data breaches.
REGULAR CYBERSECURITY AUDITS
Conduct periodic cybersecurity audits to identify vulnerabilities and weaknesses in your system, enabling proactive measures to be taken.
IMPLEMENT CYBERSECURITY BEST PRACTICES
Adhering to industry best practices, such as encryption and secure network configurations, enhances overall cybersecurity posture.
Small businesses must proactively protect valuable data and operations against ransomware and cyber threats. Seeking assistance from cybersecurity professionals can also strengthen their defenses. By following these defense measures, small businesses can ensure continued growth and success in an ever-evolving digital landscape. With the right tools and knowledge, small businesses can effectively defend themselves against ransomware attacks.
“The Ransomware Task Force called for the cybersecurity community to “develop a clear, actionable framework for ransomware mitigation, response, and recovery.” The basis for this Blueprint for Ransomware Defense is the CIS Controls, a set of well-regarded and widely-used best practices that help enterprises focus their resources on the critical actions needed to defend against the most common cyber attacks. It includes a subset of these best practices, or “Safeguards,” most relevant to combating ransomware.” – the quote from The Institute Security + Technology