I asserted previously that “…You are defenseless against Ransomware.”  Following is a review of the damage and remediation costs associated with Ransomware.  If ONE employee makes an errant click…here’s what you’ll face.

Within minutes no one on your staff will be able to open documents…any documents.  Ransomware encrypts everything from Word and Excel docs to PDF files to photos, video, and presentations, to text files and databases.  Even e-mail is vulnerable.  Hundreds of file types are encrypted translating to hundreds of thousands of files in a typical small business.  You won’t be able to access them.  Period.  Your two choices will be to a) pay a ransom, or b) don’t pay.

First the moral-ethical issue.  Should you give in to thieves that are extorting money?  If you pay, aren’t you encouraging and financing more of this activity…actually helping them?  Worse, will they actually give you the Encryption Key that you will need to unlock your files?  Have they loaded any “back-door” software into your network to fleece you again?

You become angry…isn’t this a Law Enforcement issue?  Can’t this be reported and the bad guys found and brought to justice?  Unfortunately, the level of your crime typically does not reach the level necessary for Law Enforcement entities to investigate.  No reliable solution exists to resolve your “locked files” problem.  It should not be this way, but it is.  Sorry.  But you spend time filing that police report and “someone will get back to you.”

The thieves are almost entirely from foreign countries…beyond US Law.  They set up shop in the time it takes to set up a computer.  They attack in the time it takes to click “send.”  They sit for a few hours/days to see what they “haul in.”  Then they tear down and vanish as rapidly as they set up…often with the veiled support of their “host” country.