Ransomware -now more than ever- is a very real, very threatening concern for any modern business. Naturally, after hearing of such a threat one is inclined to as the following questions:
So, what the heck is ransomware anyway?
Ransomware, according to Oxford Dictionary, is “A type of malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid.” Do you think this sounds like the stuff of fiction, like an Ocean’s 11 movie but it’s just one guy with a ThinkPad? Think again! Ransomware is actually real and very harmful, really! Look no further than the recent attack on JBS, the world’s largest meatpacker was held hostage by ransomware just earlier this month at time of writing. Other notable examples include the SamSam attack of 2018, TeslaCrypt from 2015 and the one that started them all, the “AIDS Trojan”.
The best way business owners can guard themselves against such an attack it two fold. First, invest in IT. Make sure your systems and software are up to date. Purchase quality software aimed at preventing malware attacks and use it on all your devices. Second, purchase cyber insurance. Should you fall victim to a ransomware attack, the coverage from an cyber insurance policy will ensure your business’s liability for any data breach involving client information is covered. Most policies will also cover costs associated with damage to computer systems, data recovery and notifying clients of the data breach.
What should you do if your systems become infected?
First and foremost, contact your lawyer and a representative from the insurance company that sold you your cyber insurance policy. In situations such as this, it is important to be in contact with a legal professional as well as an expert familiar with what your cyber policy will and will not cover.
Remember, do not surrender any money or information. Ransomware scammers like to exploit the panic of the victim and the impulse decisions that come as a result.
Stay calm, and let the professionals guide you through this stressful process.