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Technology Talks: IT Security Episode 3 - Ransomware, and Helping your Employees Adopt an IT Security Policy

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Ransomware is unfortunately rife in the cyber criminal world – this is when hackers infiltrate your systems. The most popular way of doing this is via phishing emails, i.e emails pretending to be from reliable sources and encourage you to click a link, or driveby ad based downloads. These are deceptive pop up windows found on websites which then start a malicious download on your computer, and are very easy to click on.

Once they’re in, the hackers encrypt your data and lock it down, and there is absolutely no way to get it back unless you pay the cyber criminals a fee, within a limited time period.

In today’s episode of Technology Talks, I ask Paul Burns and Steve Cox what should businesses do in that situation, and to try and prevent it in the first place, how can you best encourage your staff to adopt an IT Security policy and set good data practices?

As a final word on Ransomware, here’s the stance from our security partners Sophos on their excellent Naked Security blog:

“Take this story as a warning, and don't forget that there are many other ways you could lose your files forever.

For example, you could drop your laptop in the harbour (it happens!); a thief could run off with your computer (it happens!); or you could entrust your files to a cloud service that suddenly shuts down (it happens!).

The endgame is the same in all cases: if you have a reliable and recent backup, you'll have a good chance of recovering without too much trouble.

  • Prevention, in this case, is significantly better than cure:
  • Stay patched. Keep your operating system and software up to date.
  • Make sure your anti-virus is active and up to date.
  • Avoid opening attachments you weren't expecting, or from people you don't know well.
  • Make regular backups, and store them somewhere safe…”

Stay tuned tomorrow for our next episode where will cover how to secure mobile devices, and the potential impact of the ‘Internet of Things’.

If you’ve got any questions from this or any of the topics in Technology Talks: IT Security please email them to and we’ll get one of our experts on the case.

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