anti-ransomware

CEOs can lose their job over IT issues

Nearly every week during the past few years has featured a headline about the latest data breach, malware attack, ransomware demand, or unrecoverable corporate data loss. Those stories are frequently followed by news that the CEOs at those high-profile companies were forced to resign.

Security concerns have become a critical business problem, yet they are still handled as a technical problem – mainly by IT departments. Thankfully, many organizations have started bringing together IT executives and non-IT leadership together to reshape their approach towards security concerns.

CEOs need to know what they should worry about when it comes to protecting the company’s data against cybercriminals and malware – and there are plenty of high-profile examples they can learn from.

Hard Lessons from the Catastrophic Attack on VFEmail.com

Imagine yourself as a service provider who wakes up one day, pours a cup of coffee, and checks email, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter – only to discover a flurry of panicky messages from customers about your service being unavailable. You rush to your management console to find that nothing is working; your entire operating environment is an unresponsive black hole. Racing to your data center, you discover a faceless attacker has wiped out every bit of data you own and maintain on behalf of your customers, erasing every hard drive on the premises.

What’s worse is they have also managed to destroy your backup servers. You have no recovery options.

That’s not an imaginary worst-case scenario. That’s what happened earlier this week to VFEmail.net, a US-based provider of secure email services.

Outdated software is the weak link in your data protection

New computers and software can be expensive. If you're using your laptop for your child's homework assignments or keeping your fledgling small business going, you might be tempted to not update your device or software that often. After all, it’s getting the job done, and as the saying goes, “If it’s ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

A lot of people think this way. A recent report found that most people in 2018 are using computers that are on average six years old. Only 2.54 percent of users have a machine purchased in 2017, and nearly 75 percent of users who own a device bought it in 2011 or earlier.

The problem with relying on an older computer is that updating to newer software – from apps to operating systems – can become more difficult. More importantly, relying on outdated operating systems, file- and print-sharing utilities, and applications can expose your computer and all the data you keep on it to tremendous risks.

Cyber Insurance, Cyber Warfare, and Modern IT Needs

Insurance company cites act-of-war to deny ransomware damages claim

You purchased cyber insurance to protect your business, just like you bought health insurance to protect yourself and your family. However, in the same way that health insurance can deny a procedure or medication, cyber insurers may deny your claims for business disruption arising from cyberattacks. 

Security professionals talk about cybercrime as though it’s a war, an ongoing battle against malicious actors. Apparently, insurance companies now agree.

Surveying the Malware Landscape for 2019

Looking back at 2018, the fight against malware showed glimmers of promise, as new technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) were successfully deployed in some quarters to fight high-priority threats like ransomware.

The outlook for 2019 is less rosy, though, as malicious state actors and cybercriminals prepare for battle with a new array of tools and techniques designed to create mayhem and reap profits at the expense of everyone else.

Buckle up, IT security pros: the following trends indicate the anti-malware ride in 2019 is going to be a bumpy one.

RanSim adds cryptojacking scenarios

We’ve blogged about RanSim before: it’s a nice tool from KnowBe4, a security awareness training company that employs the famous former hacker, Kevin Mitnick. They help people learn about IT security and prepare for various security threats. RanSim originally served as a ransomware simulator – allowing users to see if their systems were protected against ransomware attacks without the risk of the real thing.

Recently, KnowBe4 updated RanSim so that it also emulates cryptojackers – the latest, fast-growing malware threat that targets computers and mobile devices to hijack system resources to secretly mine cryptocurrency – and Acronis' cyber protection technology performed extremely well.

 

Sobering Lessons from the KraussMaffei Ransomware Attack

The recent cyberattack on KraussMaffei, a German manufacturer of molding machinery for plastics and rubber, provides another reminder of the growth, persistence and destructiveness of ransomware. For those unfamiliar with it, ransomware is a type of malware that targets and infects servers, workstations and mobile devices, encrypts all the data it finds, and then presents a note demanding an online payment for the key necessary to unlock the files.

Both businesses and consumers are vulnerable to ransomware attacks: cyber criminals have used it to extort billions of dollars from victims in recent years, and are projected to net another $11.5 billion from them in 2019.  

Peer Insights Customers' Choice for Backup

When Gartner announced the 2018 Gartner Peer Insights Customers’ Choice awards for Data Center Backup and Recovery products last week, the foresight and vision displayed by Acronis generated a surprise appearance. That’s because unlike the other six vendors recognized as a Customers’ Choice, Acronis was not covered in Gartner’s previous Magic Quadrants for Backup and Recovery.

Instead, Acronis earned the recognition as Peer Insights Customers’ Choice because actual product users submitted enough high-quality testimonials and scores to get the company added to the awards list.

AI can unlock a new level of security sought by experts

How well protected is your company’s data? If you’re like the majority of IT professionals, probably not well enough. That’s not our opinion, but rather the honest answer from 62 percent of IT professionals from around the globe who reported that their security infrastructure has gaps that would allow attackers to penetrate their defenses.

That revelation is just one of the troubling findings from the Ponemon Institute’s recent report on the modern IT security gap and how artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) could help.

 

Acronis True Image 2019 Further Enhances Data Security

When Acronis True Image 2017 New Generation was introduced in January 2017, it marked a new level in data protection as the first backup product to deliver effective behavior-based protection from ransomware. Later that same year, with the release of Acronis True Image 2018, we enhanced our Acronis Active Protection set of technologies with artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver an additional layer of security to an already effective and award-winning anti-ransomware defense. 

With the newly released Acronis True Image 2019, we’re bringing even more enhancements to our data security and anti-ransomware technologies, making the product even more secure and user-friendly.