How to protect yourself from WannaCry Ransomware
Ok let’s get down to business.Yes, the first version of WannaCry ransomware was accidentally slowed down by a scientist. He achieved it by registering a domain that served as a kill switch for the ransomware.
Europol reports confirm that the ransomware attack has now infected over 200,000 organizations and individuals in 150 countries.
FACT: many organizations avoid reporting it because it will damage their reputation.
Thus, these statistics are not representative of the real numbers of infected organizations.
“For now, it does not look like the number of infected computers is increasing,” said a Europol spokesman. “We will get a decryption tool eventually, but for the moment, it’s still a live threat and we’re still in disaster recovery mode.”
As expected new variations of the ransomware are emerging in a desperate effort by hackers to increase their impact capabilities and showcase their power.
At this stage hackers are unstable because of the unexpected turn they faced and we do not know what they will do out of desperation. Their desperation may become a trigger point for a different form of the attack (other type of malware) in an effort to make it so that organizations to not see it coming.
We do not know all the possible variations of the malware thus, let’s keep all our bases covered.
If you want to protect yourself and your business from WannaCry ransomware at least do the following immediately:
- Back-up your data yesterday to offline storage.
- Keep more than one backups of the same data. If possible 3 or more.
- Keep some of the backups away from internet connected devices k.a air gapped devices (preferably machines which have never been connected to the internet or shared data (through flash drives with other devices which might already be affected).
- If you can create an image of your computer then do it immediately. If you cannot create an image of your computer content then at least record your software along with license keys as well as installation files (if you cannot find them online) to offline backups as well. It will speed up your recovery process in case your devices are infected.
- Update your computer if you are a Windows user. Immediately install the security patch that Microsoft has released to block the specific exploit used from the WannaCry ransomware. For unsupported version of Windows like Windows XP, Windows 2008 or Server 2003, you can get the patches from the Microsoft Website. However this is an emergency patch. You should upgrade to a supported version of Windows as soon as possible.
- Have an anti-virus program installed and keep it up to date. If you don’t have anti-virus software enabled on your Windows machine then at least enable Windows Defender (free).
- Disable “SMB 1.0/CIFS File Sharing Support”. You can find it at Control Panel ->Programs ->Turn Windows Features On or Off. Scroll down the list to find the “SMB 1.0/CIFS File Sharing Support” option. If it is ticked, untick it and press Ok. Let the system do the change. Then restart your computer.
Now it’s time to make a choice
Keep doing exactly what you do. Who needs protection after all?
Make a responsible decision to start permanently protecting your business today instead of waiting to the last minute. Hackers are here to stay and if you want your business to survive you need to accept that and strategize on how to keep them away.
If you found this article helpful please share it with your friends, family and the public. Massive action from us will put a break to the attack. Thank you.
If you want to learn more on how cyber attacks are initiated then read this article: The roots to your security problem