Small business ransomware attacks on Florida companies continue to escalate as corporate and governmental bodies across the state grapple with how to protect their critical business data. Owing to several contributing factors, Florida small to medium-sized businesses have become prime targets for the vast network of cybercriminal organizations dispersed across the globe.
When your company gets hit unsuspectingly by an advanced ransomware attack, you have to immediately bring your operations back online. If not, and you’re flatly unable, you risk disappointing your valued customers and trusted business partners. As the current threat situation stands, the question isn’t really about whether or not you will become a cyber attack victim but when. Moreover, the costs associated with the ransomware attack recovery process in Florida continue to climb dramatically, year-over-year, as this growing epidemic shows no sign of wavering any time soon.
With that in mind, Florida business owners would be remiss to avoid working on tightening their cybersecurity standards and protocols now. A watertight information security plan is the surest way to preserve your valuable business information, but it will also protect the brand reputation you spend years, if not decades, developing. Here are a few pieces of must-know information that will help your Florida business protect itself from the recent deluge of ransomware attacks in the state:
Understanding the risks of ransomware
Ransomware is little more than another type of malware that encrypts your files with a threat to leak them publicly or block their access entirely. Ransomware attacks usually originate in phishing emails at companies that have effectuated poor email security controls. When an unwitting employee opens one of these electronic mailings and clicks on an infected link or malicious attachment, they start the process of downloading ransomware onto your systems. Once the malware spreads, criminal hackers gain further access to your network, diving deeper into your system, before eventually taking it over completely and rendering it inoperable.
The moment you identify a ransomware attack, you can almost always anticipate a negative impact on your business operations. Failing to prepare for a ransomware attack by not running the appropriate protection software and backing up your data puts your organization in a difficult bind. When businesses refuse to acquiesce to ransom demands after a successful attack, they almost assuredly lose access to their mission-critical information and risk discovering their sensitive customer data exposed online.
Still, if you decide to pay up, there’s no guarantee that the criminal hackers who targeted your organization will ever restore your systems. Any customer data leaked online could expose you to litigation and even criminal charges. At the end of the day, choosing to pay the ransom only enables the attackers who might just as readily come back around to cause even further damage to your company in ways you might not have imagined.
How do you know when a ransomware attack starts?
One of the most dangerous aspects of a ransomware attack is that, all too often, you won’t know the strike has occurred until you’re completely locked out of your systems. Managed service providers like PCH Technologies strongly emphasize continuous monitoring in their ransomware recovery services because defeating the attack depends heavily upon detecting the threats early on. Early detection can be difficult, if not impossible, without access to the latest cybersecurity tools that most reputable MSPs should have at their disposal.
Software updates are crucial for preventing ransomware
Keeping up with your software updates is often tedious and unnecessarily resource-intensive. Managed service providers ensure your software is always up-to-date with the latest security patches to keep your systems running uninterruptedly. As the security environment evolves, new threats emerge, and routine patching resolves any existing vulnerabilities, making it more difficult for criminals to exploit your valuable data. An MSP can help automate your scheduled patching to avoid a potentially costly lapse in required system maintenance.
Cybersecurity education is the key
Since most cyber security attacks start with human error, educating and training your employees on the importance of information security is essential. Companies that fail to inform their employees on cybersecurity matters are more likely to find their staff opening suspicious links, unwittingly releasing confidential information, and downloading files from questionable websites.
One of the best approaches for preventing a ransomware attack or, for that matter, any cyber attack, is to implement an ongoing training initiative that educates your employees about the risks of accessing untrusted sites, downloading unfamiliar files, and releasing private company information without prior authorization. Your odds of avoiding a catastrophic cyber attack increase considerably when your employees can recognize and avoid phishing scams and other social engineering methods criminals use to gain access to your private network.
Knowing when to outsource your cybersecurity protection to an MSP
No one solution for preventing ransomware attacks exists. But when an attack occurs, ransomware data recovery and mitigating the impact of the strike gets complicated and messy. The good news is that your Florida small business has access to a team of information security specialists who can handle your cybersecurity protection in whole or in part through a co-managed solution.
Few resources can relieve more potential IT headaches than a trusted MSP. As a reputable provider, we at PCH Technologies start the process by determining if we can meet your IT security needs before setting up a comprehensive cyber risk assessment. This analysis will identify any existing system vulnerabilities. After isolating any potential weak links, we’ll work with you closely to develop an action plan to implement the required security measures over time, addressing your most urgent needs first.
The cybersecurity experts at PCH Technologies recognize that small business ransomware attacks are rapidly on the rise. Florida businesses like yours need cost-effective solutions for preventing these incidents. We’ll help simplify the onboarding process by minimizing the required downtime since we know that business productivity is a top priority.
Contact us now at (856) 754-7500 to learn more about our ransomware recovery services, or fill out our customer form online to schedule your free discovery call today.
Our Florida Office
As of 2022, PCH Technologies has opened up a new location in Fort Lauderdale, FL in order to serve the South Florida Market. This expansion into the South Florida market aligns strategically with our plans to continue to grow a national presence as a managed service provider (MSP).