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Taking bytes out of business

As ransomware attacks become more sophisticated, they pose an ever-increasing threat to data-driven systems. Much like an infectious disease, malware wreaks the most havoc once it spreads; so the best way for hackers to get the most bang for their buck is by targeting vulnerable businesses. When an encrypted file from one account syncs to the cloud and to other devices, productivity grinds to a halt. Without multilayered ransomware defenses, the quickest way for a business to regain file access may be to bite the bullet and pay the ransom.

However, attacks can produce a ripple effect that extends beyond the initial cost of the decryption key. Businesses may still be forced to conduct impact analyses, disinfect machines, and manually restore backup data, all of which can take weeks depending on the organization. During this recovery period, there’s usually more data loss and financial burden.

The evolution of ransomware

Even with strong security measures in place, attacks are getting harder and harder to avoid. Conventional solutions can help reduce the likelihood of a full blown infection, but attackers know to test common defenses (antivirus software, next-generation firewalls, secure email and web gateways, intrusion prevention systems), adjusting their strategies accordingly. Some hackers have even begun to slow down the encryption process, making their malware less predictable. This keeps any infection below the threshold of traditional detection software. Randomizing the file overwriting process can also make ransomware harder to identify.

In addition to changing encryption methods, ransomware developers are shifting delivery tactics. Since organizations are better at educating employees to be wary of suspicious email links, hackers have turned to using attachments instead. Disguised as common file types (.doc or .pdf), these attachments launch a ransomware script when opened.

You can establish a solid backup plan, train employees to be cautious, and keep security software up to date, but ransomware can mutate rapidly into new variants, making it increasingly difficult to pinpoint with a traditional signature-based approach. It’s best to have multiple layers of defense, including anomaly detection, account blocking, and version control.

Advancing data protection

Designed to combat ransomware from the ground up, Egnyte delivers three core defenses to help organizations stay ahead of malware:

  1. Early detection

In the event that ransomware makes it past your organization’s security perimeter, Egnyte utilizes machine learning algorithms to detect and alert for unusual behavior. It will also monitor for anomalies like inconsistent file types. Our solution spots evidence of an infection by identifying file extensions that have changed or contain known ransomware signatures, as well as the presence of a “ransom note”.

  1. Better protection

If irregularities are found, we quickly alert admins and enable them to block all affected user accounts, thus containing the ransomware before it spreads. We identify every encrypted file and trace the infection back to its source. Egnyte provides peace of mind for end users and admins by analyzing the extent of the damage and minimizing data loss.

  1. Quick recovery

We don’t rely on external backup services because disaster recovery is built into our content architecture. Instead, we provide frequent file snapshots as changes are made, so it’s easy to restore the latest clean version –– all without compromising other company data. Our platform combats ransomware on a granular level, so nothing is lost and business can continue with minimal downtime.

If you’re ready to learn more about our end-to-end data protection, visit www.egnyte.com/protect.