Colonial Pipeline Ransomware Attack

Ransomware has once again made headlines, this time due to an attack on Colonial Pipeline. Do you know how to defend against and respond to an attack like this?

A recent ransomware attack against Colonial Pipeline resulted in a widespread shortage of gas across the country. The encryption of the petroleum supplier’s systems forced them to shut down operations for a number of days, highlighting the vulnerability of critical US infrastructure to cybercrime attacks.

Discover everything you need to know about the attack in this segment on NECN, featuring our CEO, Jacqueline Lawlor:

Ransomware Attacks Are Becoming More Frequent

“This is not new at all,” said Jacqueline. “We’ve been seeing the uptick the last three years”

Ransomware hit new heights in recent years, affecting thousands of businesses across the country and around the globe. According to Datto’s Global State of the Channel Ransomware Report:

  • 85% of MSPs report ransomware as the most common malware threat to SMBs.
  • In the first half of 2019 alone, 56% of MSPs report attacks against clients. 15% of MSPs report multiple ransomware attacks in a single day.
  • 61% of SMB businesses suffered a ransomware attack last year with an average of six days of downtime.

How Should You Respond To A Ransomware Attack?

In the NECN segment, Jacqueline offered valuable advice for how  business owners should proceed in the event of an attack:

  • Never Pay The Ransom: Paying the ransom encourages cybercriminals to simply come back for more at a later date. Instead, you can contact the FBI, or a company like RetroFit Technologies, which has expertise with this type of event and can help manage the response and limit the damage.
  • Rely On Your Data Backup: If you have a data backup solution, then at least your data is protected. While this won’t do much to address the disruption an attack will cause, you can still avoid data loss, or having to pay the ransom to get your data back. That’s why you should make a considerable investment in a comprehensive backup data recovery solution so that you can restore your data at a moment’s notice when necessary. Be sure to:
    • Back up data on a regular basis — at least daily, but RetroFit Technologies recommends clients backup on an hourly basis.
    • Inspect your backups manually to verify that they maintain their integrity.
    • Secure your backups and keep them independent from the networks and computers they are backing up.
    • Separate your network from the backup storage, so the encryption process is unable to “hop” networks to the backup storage device. This keeps your backup data from being encrypted.

How Can You Protect Your Business From Ransomware?

If reading about ransomware attacks like this one makes you wonder if your business is vulnerable to security breaches and cybercriminal attacks, don’t wait until you are attacked to come up with a plan.

When you’re not sure if you have the skills or knowledge to get the job done, what can you do? Consult with cybersecurity professionals like those on the RetroFit Technologies team.