Six Keys to Ransomware Preparedness & Recovery

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Six Keys to Ransomware Preparedness & Recovery

-From Bobs Guide News- Financial News

cyber securityAccording to a CNN report, ransomware events collected $209 million in Q1 2016, and are expected to collect $1 Billion in 2016. The FBI estimates that attacks using the CryptoWall variant of ransomware accrued over $18m by June 2015. And, in the first quarter of 2016 saw quadruple the attack rate seen whole of last year.

End-user awareness and smart browsing practices are important, as is regularly updating security, anti-virus and anti-malware software, including operating systems. Because attackers benefit from weakly protected data, organizations should also replace antiquated IT infrastructures.

A 6-Step Plan for Data Backup
Data protection experts have outlined six proactive steps that IT can use to keep data safe. These steps provide the foundation of a backup plan that is highly efficient, seamlessly executed and unnoticeable to the end user.

1. Protect Distributed Data: “How”
An enterprise-grade automated backup solution that performs regular backups across devices, desktops and cloud apps, such as Office 365, will protect distributed data and act as an insurance policy in case of a ransomware strike or other intrusion. Make sure to select a cloud-based backup solution, as it provides off-site storage. Off-site storage that leverages any of the AWS or Azure storage locations not only provides off-site capabilities but also complies with local data residency laws by storing it in the same region.

2. Backup Distributed Data: “Who”
Does your current backup plan cover 100% of your user base, including geographically distributed teams? To reduce your exposure to potential data loss, review and validate the deployment scope of your backup plan to ensure that your backup solution deploys automatically to all end users needing protection. At a minimum, you should ensure that key users are covered by your data protection policy.

3. Review the Scope of Your Data Backup: “What”
What are you backing up? You’re probably protecting desktops and email,
but what about other user-specific data sets such as profiles, system and app settings, or folders? We highly recommend that you review, validate, and, as needed, modify backup content to ensure that all important data for protected users is backed up. If you need a more comprehensive plan, you should consider creating custom folders where users can store data for backup and further reduce data loss.

4. Check Backup Frequency Across Distributed Teams: “When”
How often are you backing up? Every 2 days? 8 hours? 4 hours? Do you need an even more aggressive schedule for executives? Review, validate and, if needed, modify backup frequency to ensure automated, periodic backup of mission critical data for all protected users. As a general rule, we recommend that you backup data, at minimum, once every 4 hours, and every 2 hours for key users. You may also want to select a different backup frequency depending on the requirements of specific users and teams.

5. Validate Your Retention Policy: “How Long?”
How long are you keeping your backups? 14 days? 7 weeks? 6 months? Review, validate and, if needed, adopt a longer retention policy to meet internal objectives and ensure a sufficient Recovery Point Objective (RPO), especially for key people and departments. Your data retention policy may vary depending on your industry, regulations and internal IT policies. IT, Legal, and Compliance teams may need to weigh in on data retention needs.

6. Re-Assess Policies Periodically: “Looking Ahead”
While the preceding measures might provide sufficient protection for the
foreseeable future, we highly recommend that you revisit your backup policies approximately every six months to ensure that they meet your organization’s needs. IT often has the primary responsibility for this routine and, in some cases, acts in coordination with the Legal team.

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