We aren’t talking about your common horror story monsters, the ones that only come out during a full moon or hide under your bed at night. We are talking about the devilish monsters that hide deep in your IT systems and wreak havoc to your network. That’s right, we are talking about the various types of Malware that your organization’s networks are at risk of on a daily basis. These monsters aren’t just after high pitched screams and fright, they are trying to capture your organization’s sensitive information, resources and money.
The first step in taking precaution to these monsters is truly knowing your enemy. Viruses, Spyware and Worms – Oh my (… corny I know). After you learn what makes these monsters tick – you will be one step closer to securing your environment.
Here are some types of malware to be on the look for and how to defend your network against them:
A computer virus will affect your files, cause problems with your operating system, or render your computer completely unusable. Human interaction is required for a virus to start. The virus will attach itself to persuasive files and as the user opens the file the virus will come to life.
Defense Tools: Anti-spam
Spyware doesn’t necessarily harm your computer, but instead it targets the user. Once spyware is on your machine, it can track everything you type. Criminals will use this information to gain access to your files, emails, bank accounts, and anything else you do on your computer. Spyware is normally attached to a downloadable file and once the file is open, it will download quietly in the background.
Defense Tools: Anti-malware
Adware tracks what you do online and will create advertisements that are of your interest. Adware is an easy way for hackers to gain money. They can significantly slow down your computer as they demand a lot from CPU. Many times, adware comes with other types of malware which can cause further damage.
Defense Tolls: Behavioral Detection
Scareware is used to scare you into buying software that you don’t need. Usually you will get a pop up that says your computer has hundreds of viruses or some other problems and it will prompt you to buy a certain software to fix these issues.
Defense Tools: User Management
Ransomware is similar to scareware but far more sinister. Instead of just prompting you to buy something you don’t need, ransomware takes your computer completely hostage and demands a fee for the decryption key. New and sophisticated methods of ransomware are surfacing every day and it is definitely one of the most dangerous threats out there. It is important to protect your organization and clients by not only having good behavioral detection, but a backup and disaster recovery plan in the case of this happening.
Skills: hostage Negotiation
Defense: Behavioral Detection / BDR
Worms exploit operating system vulnerabilities and spreads over computer networks. Worms have the ability to create bot-nets and to spread from one computer to the next by themselves. For example, a worm can be transferred via email and can replicate by sending a new worm to everyone in an infected user’s contact list.
Defense Tools: Avoid Spam
Trojans prowl around for unprotected devices and will install itself in a machine without knowledge of the user. Once the malware is installed it will create a backdoor to allow remote access leaving your data and sensitive information vulnerable
Defense Tools: Firewalls
The best network security won’t happen overnight. Take the first step this spooky Halloween season by strengthening your current security policies and educating your employees about the risks of cyber threats. Adopting the “it won’t happen to us” attitude towards security isn’t acceptable with the most experienced monsters out there. Talk to your local managed service provider to learn about your network security options and what measures you can take to fully protect your organization’s data. While there might be some initial upfront costs to protect your assets, the investment will pay off in the long run when those monsters are staying away.
Don’t allow these monsters to creep into your organization’s IT systems this Halloween – talk to an IT support specialist about your Managed IT Security options today.
Netserve365 is a Pittsburgh Managed IT Services Provider that can supply 24/7/365 managed security support for your organization today. With our network operations center constantly monitoring your systems, you can relax knowing that your data is safe. Contact us today for more information on Managed Security.