Cybersecurity is a hot topic with the recent cyber attacks Wannacry and Petya affecting businesses around the world. A big question at the moment is: how can I protect my business from a cyber attack?
Hello everyone. Welcome to another episode of the Lancom TV.
Imran and I sitting are here today, and we're going to be discussing a topic that is actually quite hot at the moment. And the topic is viruses vs. ransomware. We have had some incidents lately in the media, and we thought we would come and talk to you about some key takeaways that, as individuals and businesses, we can take home and start thinking about how we can prevent those things coming to your business, to your house. So, our expert is here today. He's gonna give us his opinions. Shall we get cracking, Imran?
Sure. Let's go.
Topic #1: What are the key differences between viruses and ransomware?
Okay. So I thought the first obvious question, at least for me, is what's sort of the difference between viruses and ransomware?
Right. So, from how I look at it, viruses are like killers and ransomware is like kidnappers, right? So when you're infected with a virus, it comes in and destroys files and corrupts things, and you can't get them back. You have to use a backup or other means of getting those files back, whereas ransomware is... they kidnap the files from you, they lock it with some encryption and then you have to contact them, pay them some money. And then if you're lucky you'll get your files back, but sometimes you can have mishaps and you don't get your files back.
Topic #2: How you can protect yourself from viruses and ransomware
That's a very good analogy, killers vs. kidnappers. I never thought about it that way, but none of us want to either be killed or kidnapped. So, shall we talk about, I guess, some of the practical ways and some suggestions that people can take home and sort of start thinking about what they can do to avoid being killed or kidnapped by viruses or ransomware? What is the key thing here, Imran? How can I not be hacked, I suppose? How can I avoid clicking on something that maybe I shouldn't be?
Look, I mean, protection against viruses is quite mature. We know that viruses have been there for a long, long time. So we have email scanning which can check for the common signature for viruses, as well as provide protection against when they're actually trying to attack the files, whereas ransomware is quite new phenomena, and it's much harder for antiviruses to actually protect against those things. So what we need to do is two things. One is we need to make sure that our employees, as well as all the colleagues that we work with, are much more educated on how these things spread as well as what to do to protect against them. And the second is to have some kind of software to protect against the viruses itself and ransomware.
So in terms of education, we just need to be very careful on where we go when you're browsing the internet. So make sure you don't go into anonymous sites, the ones that you do not know about. And the second is don't download anything without knowing that you're downloading it from a proper site. For example, don't go to an update site trying to update software. Make sure it's an official site for that software where you can download the update from, because nowadays ransomwares inject into different updates as well.
They're getting clever, aren't they?
Exactly. So people think they're actually downloading an update for a software, but it has a hidden ransomware in there and it spreads through there. And the second biggest medium for ransomware is, nowadays, emails, spoofed emails, right?
We all use emails, so unfortunately we are all exposed.
Yeah. So we need to be very careful on the emails that we get, is to make sure that they are actually legitimate. So check where they're coming from, what the topic is, don't click on anything within the email unless you're absolutely sure. And the third thing is to use some kind of gateway product to protect against these links in the first place.
Topic #3: What products do we recommend to protect yourself?
Is there any product that we sort of recommend that we use ourselves that people can sort of look up and try themselves?
So one of the best ones in the market that Microsoft has developed is called Advanced Threat Protection, and what that does is it scans your emails before they arrive at your mailbox, so if it has any links that it is unsure of, it will actually change those links to a generic one so you don't accidentally click and download anything.
Great, so that's probably something that, as businesses, we should be looking at...
...at the moment. Right. So what I get is, virus is one thing, ransomware is another thing. The way you can go about protecting about those two things is...it's kind of similar in a way. It's be suspicious, make sure that you understand what you can click on, what you shouldn't click on, and then make sure that you're putting in place a layer of protection by having a product that helps you to try and mitigate some of those issues.
All right. So that's it for today. Thank you so much once again, Imran. It's awesome talking to you, and we look forward to coming back and talking to you about more trends around technology and things that we are working with here at Lancom. See ya!
Awesome. Thanks, guys. Bye!