Will Your Backup Withstand a Ransomware Attack?
It’s always wise to back up files regularly. But a recent development in cyberspace makes it more important than ever – ransomware. Ransomware is an increasingly dangerous form of malware that encrypts data and makes it unrecoverable unless a ransom is paid. Those logging onto infected systems are served up a notice telling them that all of their files have been encrypted and if they ever want to open them again, they will have to pay a ransom. Ransom requests for individuals can be a few hundred euros. But for businesses, the amount can run to thousands of euros.
Some recent data from the FBI shows the extent of the problem and also shows that companies are paying huge ransoms.
- In one recent two month period, at least a quarter of a million computers were targeted.
- According to the FBI, there were more than 2,400 reported ransomware attacks in 2015
- Ransoms paid during the first quarter of 2016 surpassing $200 million.
The reality is that it is more important than ever that data is properly backed up. In the event of a ransomware attack, the presence of a comprehensive backup means that any infected servers or devices can be wiped clean, then all software and data reloaded.
Effectiveness of backup can be hampered by several factors.
- Some companies and some individuals forget to run backups.
- Sometimes the backups fail on a random basis.
- Others set their backup intervals at one week. That means that if the backup is done each Saturday morning and the ransomware attack took place on Friday night, an entire week’s data doesn’t exist on any backup.
- Unfortunately with ransomware, local backup to a machine can be ineffective if it is the only backup/recovery option. This is a huge problem as newer forms of ransomware specifically target local bacbups.
- Other cloud based backups do not have capability to take databases and servers and business systems offsite.
More and more companies are turning to cloud-based backup and recovery services, which automatically send data to the cloud on a daily basis. This ensures that critical data is protected against such malicious attacks, and available for recovery at all times.
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