Businesses need to be ransom-aware!

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Post by May 13th, 2016
IT Services

William is Commercial Director of Navertech and an expert in small to enterprise level systems and security.

We are urging businesses to be extra vigilant when opening email attachments, and to treat cyber security as seriously as they would physical security.  This warning comes after several local businesses have been struck by the ransomware Cryptowall, which is a computer virus which encrypts important files and demands a ransom to get them back.

The severity of this virus is such that it’s not just a case of removing the virus, it actually encrypts commonly used files such as Microsoft Word and Excel documents.  Once encrypted, the only way to get your files back is to restore from a recent backup or pay the ransom to get a decryption key, the latter being something we consider a last resort.  It really emphasises the need for businesses to remain extra vigilant, review their IT arrangements and  double check they have complete and fully verified backups.

We have successfully decrypted customer files by paying the ransom, but it is complicated and costly as payment is typically required in Bitcoins. These perpetrators are no longer wannabe hackers doing it for fun, they are businesses generating millions of pounds in revenue ever year.

Keeping your anti-virus software up to date is essential, but it’s equally important to remain extra vigilant and do not open any attachments or downloads if it seems in any way unusual.  It’s always best to check with your IT provider if you are unsure about the legitimacy of an attachment, a service which Navertech currently offers to its IT support business customers.

The ransomware virus has affected hundreds of thousands of businesses and individuals world-wide and is typically circulated by suspicious email attachments, such as invoices and purchase orders.

If businesses require any advice or support, Navertech is only a phone call or email away and can be contacted on 01847 892892 or email support@navertech.com and we will be happy to help all existing or new business customers.

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