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Five Things to Know About Ransomware

Five Things to Know About Ransomware

Since 2005, when the first documented case of a ransomware attack came into existence in the USA, the gravity and frequency of ransomware attacks are increasing relentlessly. The recent back to back ransomware attacks of WannaCry or Wanna Decryptor and NotPetya are the stark testimony of this. The infamous WannaCry alone took hostage of 100,000 organization’s computer in 150 countries world over. The South Korean web hosting provider paid $1 million to the malware attackers, the biggest known payout, to unlock its servers.

Experts believe, in the near future, such ransomware attacks are not going to cease, as organizations world over still lag behind in implementing proactive measures that would act as a possible deterrent. So, to protect and prevent systems in becoming prone to such ransomware attacks in future one ought to know certain key essential things which are as follows:-

Ransomware: It is a kind of malicious software, originating from ‘cryptovirology’- that deals with how to use cryptography to design powerful malicious software, serves two purposes: threatening victim to publish his or her data or encrypting files and information or blocking the entire device which cannot be accessed unless and until ransom is paid in specified time frame, or device is restored to factory setting. The former one is known as ‘crypto ransomware, ’ and the latter one is called ‘locker ransomware.’ In recent attacks attackers used cryptoviral extortion technique; encrypting victim’s files and demanding a ransom payment, usually in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, to decrypt them.

Modus operandi of ransomware encryption: It’s a well-organized mathematical-computational activity which involves symmetric and asymmetric algorithm. The attacker generates a key pair, and after placing the public key in malware he or she releases it. Now, for carrying out the cryptoviral extortion attack, the malware generates a random symmetric key and encrypts the victim’s data with it by using the public key already available in the malware. It results in asymmetric as well as symmetric ciphertext of the victim’s data; the symmetric key is used for preventing the recovery, and the asymmetric ciphertext is employed in a pop-up message to the victim that includes how to pay the ransom.

Ransom payment: The victims send the asymmetric cipher text and payment, usually in crypto currencies like Bitcoin as they are anonymous, then after receiving the payment, attacker deciphers the asymmetric ciphertext with the private key that he or she holds, and sends the symmetric key to the victim. Consequently, the victim deciphers the encrypted data with the corresponding symmetric key resulting in getting access to the device or the data though it is not guaranteed and in the process completing a successful crypto-virology attack.

A typical ransom amount: As of now it’s a booming illicit business, so attackers behind the scene as with any business field are following the basic economics rules. The trend shows the lowest ransom, and highest ransom varies wildly in numbers. Most of the cases have shown an average of $700 ransom demand; however, the 20% cases have as much as $1300 ransom demand. Overall, it seems that they’re testing the waters and apparently ‘price elasticity of demand’ is doing the runs.

Risk Mitigation: Updation of software coupled installing regular security updates released by software vendors, application control, keeping “offline backups” of data and critical essentialities, greylisting, removal of local administrator rights are some effective measures to prevent & protect devices and data from any possible ransomware attack.

How to Protect Your Computer from Ransomware?

How to Protect Your Computer from Ransomware?

Want to safeguard your business against the ill-attacks of the ransomware that gave the global arena of the cyber security platform a huge blow? Ransomware, in this case, is being referred to the attacks of the Petya or Not Petya and also the WannaCry which created a huge stir in the esteemed economies of the European countries and certain Asian and American countries. In this post, the people will learn about the best ways to secure or protect the computing devices against the ill-effects of the malware.

When asked about the effects of the ransomware and its effects, the chief of the security of IBM, Wendy Whitmore, who is also the Global Partner and Lead of IBM’s X-Force Incident Response and Intelligence Services, said that on the 27th June, several organizations across 65 various nations had been affected by the malware Petya. This ransomware was previously discovered in the year 2016, in the month of March, and it used to spread primarily through email phishing. Hence, there is a growing concern among many individuals to counter this growing threat of ransomware.

When the machine got infected, the ransomware slowly spread itself and then encrypted the data files of the devices. The malware would grant access to the users when they would pay money to the creator of the malware. When the money was paid once, the malware would provide the users with a definite key decrypt or for restoration of the data. This ransomware is still considered to be running wild, and the users are being warned against clicking on to any unknown link before the verification of the source.

The top ways to secure your computing devices against this malware is given below:

Train your employees to be suspicious. They should be advised not to open any email attachments or click any unknown link. The emails, which they are not expecting can contain the source of this malware.

  • The systems should be upgraded with the latest patches of the OS.
  • Blocking specific ports will also be beneficial in this case.
  • The practice of backing up the data files must also be there.
  • Opt for regular visits by expert IT technicians.

Will ransomware attacks again be present on the global stage?

The answer is very much YES. Ransomware will not stop its spread after this incident, in fact, you may not know, there might be hundreds of it out there created already, waiting for the permission from the creators to take down the world, like literally. So what can you do to combat them? The answer lies in the adopting the method of 2FA on VPN for the internal security of the company’s digital working system. Only with the proper implementation of the Two-Factor Authentication, 2FA for Google Apps and also the secure corporate Mails can save the data to get hacked by the digital cons. You can also try to make sure that you always install the latest version of OS in your office and personal computers to keep instances of ransomware attacks at bay.

Strategies to Prevent Data from Encryption and Corruption

Strategies to Prevent Data from Encryption and Corruption

In recent years, we have entered an era where there huge advantages in the form of widespread connectivity. However, at the same time, there are certain risk factors associated with this phenomenon. Moreover, the trend of storing data in the cloud has made us prone to data security risks. On the other hand, when data falls into the wrong hands, the consequences can be devastating. Nowadays, there are instances where data leaks and corruption have put organizations and individuals on red alert.

It is a commonly accepted fact that good IT security agencies can play a significant role in making sure that the data of your organization is protected in the right manner. With the use of various devices that utilize the medium of the internet; it has become imperative to install certain data security framework in place. On the other hand, encryption scrambles text to make it unreadable by an individual. Hence, it can be termed as an efficient manner to stop hackers from stealing data.

What are encryption and the way it functions?

IT security seeks to protect the physical assets which imply that databases, networked computers, and servers. On the other hand, encryption protects the patterns of data that live on these assets. It is one of the most convincing manners in which data can be protected. Even if data gets stolen, it can be read and hence it is rendered useless. However, certain risk factors are associated with encryption. For instance, if data is being encrypted for security purposes then the company would have a hard time to decrypt it as data can be needed at any point in time. One can also use various algorithms like E2E encryption and file encryption to encrypt and decrypt data successfully.

How to prevent data corruption?

For those who are not aware of the term data corruption, it is a manner in which error occurs due to data loss and improperly written codes. As per recent inputs from several technology experts, data corruption is one of the primary causes of data loss in the past years. This has also put the organizations on high alert. However, it is not that risky as that of data hacking, and this is why it is still an underrated phenomenon. But that said, the repercussions of this problem cannot be ignored. Many other experts are of the opinion that data corruption and common symptoms like disk hangs and low quality of discs.

Various strategies can be used to prevent data corruption. For instance, you can take a complete backup and use it most often. It is so because back up of any data is vital and in this way you can prevent data from being lost due to data corruption. You can also use one of the best antivirus software in your system that would help your data from corruption issues. You should also consider to regularly troubleshooting your system and should update the system issue.

Multi Factor Authentication: Secure the Access to Corporate Networks

Multi Factor Authentication: Secure the Access to Corporate Networks

Gone are the days when the password security was considered enough for protecting the data but with the new technologies and techniques getting introduced every day the credentials are very easy to compromise which puts the companies at high risk. For the identification of the wrong methods, Multi factor authentication was introduced which can also protect the corporate data.

Before the introduction of Multi factor authentication, two-factor authentication was used by the companies such as Google and Twitter which is nothing but a two-step verification of the authenticity of the user who is accessing the system or application. 2FA for google apps involves identification of the users in 2 steps the first step involves entering the password by the user and the second step has different options to choose from such as adding the phone to the account so that next time you try to access the account from another device you can acknowledge the sign-in from your phone.

What is MFA?

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is used by the companies to protect their information from any kind of breach and to Secure Corporate Mails as well. MFA adds an extra layer of the security for the protection of the sensitive information from any kind of leakage.

Need for Multi Factor Authentication

With the introduction of more apps which are cloud based and mobile, it becomes really easy for the users to access them as they can be accessed anywhere and anytime but it also creates more security issues and MFA mitigates all the security risks involved in these apps even with a single sign on option. Furthermore, everyday new vulnerabilities and the security threats are affecting the enterprises as well as the businesses which have arisen a need for an authentication method that can be scalable to according to the future needs. MFA is achieved by the authentication of the passwords or PIN, tokens, smartcards, and the biometrics also.

Benefits of Multi Factor Authentication:

  • It provides the high security to the enterprise user both internally as well as externally.
  • It balances the security with the convenience and affordability
  • Eliminates all the gaps in the security that were there in 2FA on VPN
  • Protect the different resources of the organization as well such as servers, end points, VPN’s and much more.
  • Reduced cost as well as complexity

Easy to implement authentication factor.

Predictive Analysis is Really Needed

Predictive Analysis is Really Needed

Time Demands Change

The time has come for a technology like predictive analysis, with the competitive edge increasing in the markets more and more organizations are heading towards predictive analysis.

Predictive Analysis is Really Needed

Predictive analysis involves the advanced analysis and prediction of the future events well in advance and the data volumes with calculations and probabilities. These analysis can be applied to success forecasts, sales forecasts, demand forecasts, different evaluation, and predictive data volumes. Predictive analysis can not only support innovations in the already existing processes but can also predict the future planning for sales productions. These new insights provide the possibilities for the future businesses and products.

Looking at these insights even offer the capability to examine the future risks well in advance so that organizations can prepare them accordingly before any kind of information or monetary losses. Offering the valuable predictions about the growth of data and volumes in future, predictive analysis is really helpful. The well-renowned organizations are turning more and more towards predictive analysis as along with predicting about future needs, it also helps to unleash the new opportunities available in the future and to solve the most difficult problems. It is used to determine the customer demands and purchases in the days to come which can help companies to gain more business adopt the methodologies to increase profits and retain a much wider group of customers.

From Risks to Future Needs

The predictive analysis is offering different methods and ways for improved cyber security. The 2 Factor authentication has been used widely in combination with the predictive analysis for high-performance analysis and to examine the activities and actions in real time on the network that may cause potential risks as well as threats leading to loss of important data. The need for increased security for secure corporate emails can be best handled with the different tools used for predictive analysis offering the next level of security needed for data protection.

From forecasting the inventory to adopting 2FA on VPN need of everything can be foreseen in advance before any kind of loss with the help of predictive analysis tools. Also, the different credit score examinations that are done with predictive analysis help the companies to know the credit risks for a customer depending on his/ her credit worthiness. Different airlines and hotels used this model for predicting the sales in particular so that they can adjust their prices accordingly. Helping the organizations to work more efficiently by preparing them for future needs well in advance predictive analysis is really helpful.