6 Things You Need to Do After a Ransomware Attack
Getting hit by a ransomware attack or infected with a malicious software is not fun. It can open the door to cyber criminals getting your personal and business data and potentially using it to hold you hostage until you pay them off. There are some simple precautions every business owner can take – like having adequate security software (antivirus and anti-malware) installed on your computer, apply OS security patches, not clicking on suspicious email links, and not opening unexpected email attachments – to stop the bad guys from taking taking advantage of you.
What to Do If You Find Yourself Infected
These 6 tips will show you how to deal with a ransomware attack and protect yourself from cyber criminals.
- Ignore the Ransom Demand if Possible – Do not even think about paying the ransom until you talked to your IT service provider. or trusted adviser. The demand might not come from any legitimate authority and there is no guarantee that if you pay the money that you will get your files unlocked.T Exhaust all possible options before doing this.
- Remove the Ransomware from Your Computer – Even thought ransomware may appear threatening, it is just another form of malware. There are many companies online that offer low-cost phishing and ransomware tools, or malware removal tools. At Protek, these tools are offered to all our clients in an effort to be proactive in your IT support instead of reactive. It is wise to remove the ransomware as soon as possible. The longer you leave it on your system, the more opportunity the malware has to spread, both encrypting your files further and potentially spreading to other computers in your network. Do a bit more research to determine the cause and best course of action.
- Update Your Antivirus, Anti-Malware Software and Patch Your OS – If your current antivirus protection let the ransomware get on your computer, there is likely a problem with it. It is either corrupted or not being updated regularly with the latest antivirus definitions. It is vital you have a working and advanced program installed. Update your software immediately or uninstall and find a software that is going to give you the protection you need from ransomware and other cyber threats. Once it is installed, run a scan on your system to make sure there are no further problems that need to be dealt with.
- Update Your Passwords – Once you get access to your computer, change all of the passwords you use to access websites and other accounts. Your antivirus protection has been breached. You have no idea what information my have been gather from your system. Change your passwords quickly and monitor your accounts for any suspicious activities.
- Always Back Up Your Files – If you system becomes infected with ransomware, it is likely you are going to suffer some sort of loss to your computer files. Back up your files on an external system so that if your computer is taken hostage, you will have all your files in another location.
- Freeze Your Accounts – If you have been compromised, consider putting a credit freeze or fraud alert on your accounts to make it more difficult for criminals to use your identity. If you notice suspicious activity on any of your accounts, it is important to act quickly.
Even if you believe you have done everything to protect yourself against attacks, you can still get malicious code on your computer. Working with a trusted IT provider can help you mitigate the damage and keep risks to a minimum. If you believe you have fallen victim to a ransomware attack, call Protek at 801.999.4746. We will help you navigate this scary situation and make sure you and your system are safe and secure again.
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Eric is the owner and CEO of Protek Support and is a CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional). He graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Business with an emphasis in Information Technology (IT). He is an IT Services expert in a variety of technology related fields. Some of these fields include document management software/hardware, enterprise level networking and VoIP phone systems, as well as large scale software implementation projects and the setup of small business networks.