Colonial Pipeline. JBS Food. Fujifilm. Acer. National Basketball Association. Kia Motors.
What do these prominent organizations have in common? They’ve all been victims of ransomware cyberattacks…in the first six months of 2021. One study revealed that 2020 cyberattacks cost healthcare organizations alone more than $20 billion in revenue, lawsuits, and ransom. An article in the Harvard Business Review stated that ransomware attacks in 2020 increased 150% from 2019 and the year-over-year cost was up more than 300%. The article flags the shift to a remote workforce during the pandemic and lax security profiles as the main cause of the dramatic growth in successful attacks.
Now is the time to act. Although the threat of a cyberattack is greater than ever, there are steps you can take to protect your organization.
Strengthen your Security Profile
Organizations of all sizes can become victimized by a ransomware attack. Microsoft recommends several actions to take to minimize the chances you will be one of them.
- Keep three backups of your data on two different storage types with at least one offsite
- Keep operating systems and apps up to date
- Train employees to avoid phishing attacks
- Control your folder access
Secure your Remote Workforce
The COVID-19 Pandemic has forced staff of most organizations out of the office and into remote settings. These dispersed workers must still access company systems, however, and that can lead to dangerous security leaks. To enable access while securing your systems, consider these precautions.
- Implement endpoint protection
- Adopt a Zero Trust Model -- Assume breach and treat every access attempt as coming from an open network
- Implement a secure virtual private network (VPN)
Protect your Users’ Credentials
The cause of many data breaches is stolen or compromised credentials. One report found that attacks involving usernames and passwords increased by 450% from 2019 to 2020 in the U.S, resulting in one billion compromised records.
Microsoft recommends these steps to prevent bad actors from compromising your user credentials:
- Reduce your attack surface area
- Automate threat response
- Strengthen your credentials process
- Use cloud intelligence
- Enable end user self-service
As a Microsoft Gold Certified National Solution Partner and member of the Microsoft Intelligent Security Association, DynTek provides a comprehensive range of security offerings and managed services to support your Microsoft platforms and protect against attacks. We create and implement solutions that focus on helping our customers realize the greatest value from their existing Microsoft software investment. To learn more about the growing cybersecurity threat and how DynTek can help you secure your IT environment, click here to download our latest eBook, The Growing Cybersecurity Threat – 3 Major Cybersecurity Risks & How to Counter Them.
 The 10 Biggest Ransomware Attacks of 2021, Touro College Illinois, June 10, 2021
 Ransomware Attacks Are Spiking. Is Your Company Prepared? By Brenda R. Sharton, Harvard Business Review, May 20, 2021.
 2021 ForgeRock Consumer Identity Breach Report, 2021