On May 12, 2017, a massive ransomware attack called WannaCryptor 2.0 or WannaCry hit thousands of networks in companies around the world.  The cyber campaign, reached over 150 countries and wreaked havoc for offices, government and healthcare facilities.  The WannaCry malware takes advantage of a bug within a Windows protocol.  There was a patch for this  that Microsoft put out in March of 2017, but many companies that had not updated their systems with the patch were victimized by this attack.

It is important to be aware of what’s going on with WannaCry and inevitably what variants will soon follow, read on for more information.  
This latest threat basically has the same effect as prior crypto – ransomware threats did. (They encrypt a system’s data so it cannot be accessed unless we either “solve” their code, pay their ransom – please don’t do that, or re-initialize your system and restore the data from a backup.)
To best prepare yourself to weather a ransomware attack, is by keeping your operating systems and application software up to date and by making sure that you BACK UP YOUR DATA regularly.  

The key to securing and protecting your system is by using a multi-layered approach.  A bare minimum would include a firewall and anti-virus software, educating the end users (don’t open attachments and/or links etc…), and having a strong data backup / disaster recovery plan.  
  • Here are a few other things you can do.
  • Have up to date Anti-virus software installed*
  • Renew the Anti-virus subscriptions before they expire
  • Install a good firewall, not simply a router*
  • Read emails carefully before opening and opening an attachment or clicking on a web link
  • Have multiple copies of your data, documents, pictures, etc…stored on a backup drive or cloud storage i.e. One Drive, Drop Box etc..

*Use Windows Firewall & Windows Defender or check into Security Subscriptions from Norton and AVG that offer Anti-virus and Firewall bundles.

Generally speaking, we often make mistakes when we get distracted or are trying to work on several tasks at once, so be careful, stay focused and practice safe computing.
Unfortunately, with malware like WannaCry and others, nothing is 100% effective, but we can certainly minimize exposure by following the proper procedures and implementing the appropriate technologies.
Speak with your tech provider and see if you’re protected adequately today and if you have a question please don’t hesitate to contact our office.