NHS Ransomware alert

A recent report from IT trade media title The Register discusses the epidemic of Ransomware assaults by cyber criminals on the NHS.

Ransomware is the high profile malware that extorts payment by seizing or freezing data. Attacking a soft target such as the overstretched NHS, causing the cancellation of vital treatments tells us what sort of individuals are taking this action.  The report states that 1 in 3 NHS Trusts were attacked in 2016 with Imperial College Healthcare suffering 19 attacks in 12 months faring the worst.

From this and other high profile media reports, it could be assumed that larger businesses and organisations are the main focus for attacks, but the reality is that smaller businesses are under assault too.  A report from software vendor Kaspersky in the US showed that Ransomware attacks on small businesses were eight times higher than the comparable period last year and an article in The Guardian in November stated that a survey had shown 54% of all UK businesses suffered a malware attack last year.

The reality is that pretty much all businesses are under threat.  It’s not scaremongering, its a sad fact of life today.  Fortunately, there are answers and there are solutions. Every business and organisation is different and requires options that work for each specific business model, taking account of the structure of the organisation now and going forward. Businesses need professional support with the skills and expertise to intelligently assess and analyse the situation and provide a really effective solution.

Many businesses assume that with anti-virus software and firewalls in place they are protected and to a degree they are.  The difficulty is that this protection will work against a known blacklist of malware, but it’s the thousands of new viruses being developed each day that the software is unable to recognise that can cause potentially catastrophic damage. A comprehensive solution using behavioural analysis of an endpoint and being able to reinstate data is required to provide the definitive protection business needs.

The good news is that you don’t necessarily need to purchase a completely new suite of threat protection software.  In many cases, adding additional layers will give your vital network and sensitive, confidential data the protection it requires to keep your business and its reputation secure.

Why not take advantage of our open, honest, no-obligation advice service?  Call AVR on 01189 344 300 or email info@avr.co.uk tell us your situation and we will give you our thoughts on what you could do to protect your business or organisation.  We can set up a system health check or vulnerability assessment to help you identify the areas where you could be breached.

Take a look at our short AVR Ransomware film where we set the scene and discuss a solution.