In case you hadn’t heard, it’s National Cybersecurity Awareness Month!
What is Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity topics appear on the news almost daily now. New technologies are created that offer greater convenience and efficiency but hackers are regularly finding new ways to access our personal data.
In general, cybersecurity is defined as the technology, practices and techniques that keep online data secure. Today we see more threats than ever against our digital identities. New kinds of viruses, malware and ransomware are spread across the internet. And more than ever we see large and small companies becoming victims to hackers and criminals.
What is Malware?
Malware is a type of software that can infect your computer. It’s a little different from viruses because it typically doesn’t spread like viruses do. When your computer gets infected with malware, you’ll often see unfamiliar pop-ups on your desktop or browser. Your browser will go to pages that you didn’t want. You may end up with extra plugins in your browser or desktop. All of these things are considered malware, they’re not necessarily destructive but they are invasive and annoying.
What is Ransomware?
Ransomware is a newer kind of cybersecurity threat. It’s a little bit of hybrid as it’s not considered a virus but it is a type of malware. Ransomware can be extremely destructive. When a computer is infected, the ransomware software will encrypt all of your files. No file is safe and files such as Word documents, pictures, QuickBooks files and more can all fall victim. The software will then encrypt the data with a very long passkey and that information will be locked away. There will usually be a popup or notice that demands payment for the data to be released. Businesses are usually left with few options when they get hit with ransomware. Businesses often end up paying large fees to the criminals to have their data released.
How Can I Protect My Business?
At Executech, we make it our main priority to protect businesses against these kinds of threats. We’ve seen first hand what can happen if a business is caught unprepared. Organizations big and small have lost years of data, thousands of dollars of revenue and some business have to shut down completely after a cyber attack. It’s critical that business owners take cyber threats seriously and take the appropriate precautions to protect against them.
The number one solution for preventing loss or corruption of business data is backups. A lot of businesses still don’t have thorough backups in place. With Executech’s managed IT services, we make sure every client has complete and robust backups. We see it as so important that we call backups the “holy grail” of computing. Having redundant backups in place means you don’t have to worry if your data gets encrypted. If criminals lock your data, you can simply revert back to the previous day’s backup.
There are many other products, services and practices that businesses can implement to keep their data secure. We’ll be discussing more ways to build up your cybersecurity defenses over the next few weeks. Don’t forget to check out our YouTube channel for interviews from cybersecurity experts and insights into how to protect your business.
Stay tuned for more Cybersecurity Awareness Month updates and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter to get breaking news and tech updates.