Infographic: Is Your Business Prepared For Disaster?

 

Imagine the worst case scenario – Late Sunday evening you are alerted that an electrical fault has caused a fire at your office. The first floor has been completely destroyed and the remaining floors have suffered smoke and water damage. Your computers, servers and other hardware are unusable. Could your business continue?

Property damage, repairs, furniture and hardware aren’t the only costs to your business. The time your business is out of action affects not only your profits but also your reputation. The longer your downtime, the greater the damage to the future of your business. Up to 40% of businesses affected by a disaster never reopen.

A business continuity plan could be the difference between the survival of your company and permanent closure. IT can allow your employees to continue working and supplying your customers with the best service possible.

business continuity infographic

Hosted services vs on premises services

Does your company rely on services that are location specific? If your software and services are hosted, then you are able to access them regardless of hardware damage. You will be able to restore your services in very little time and maintain a sense of business continuity.

Offsite Data Backup Vs desktop saving/Paper archives

Without an onsite backup you could lose all of your data entirely. By losing your property and data, a disaster could be fatal. If you have only paper versions of your data without any kind of digital backup these will almost certainly not survive. Client records destroyed? Will you be liable for any loss of records? With smoke, fire and water damage any paper in your office is unlikely to survive. Of companies that suffer total data loss: 43% never reopen and 51% close within two years

Remote working

Could your employees continue working as normal? If your business has remote working prepared, your employees are able to work from home or an alternative temporary location. If your employees are unable to work your business reputation would undoubtedly suffer and you could risk losing your employees too.

Phone system and contact plans

How will you contact your clients to warn them of the disaster? How will you contact your employees to notify them? And will your clients still be able to contact you? You may overlook your phone system, but in a disaster communication will be an important factor in restoring business continuity. Ensure your phone system can be diverted to an alternative location and that in an emergency you will be able to contact your clients, suppliers and employees.

Evacuation plan

While business continuity is important; the most crucial element of a disaster is ensuring no one is harmed. Do you have a suitable evacuation plan and are you able to track where your employees are on site? Property is repairable, but losing your employees or colleagues would be a greater disaster.

If you would like to discuss your business continuity or disaster recovery plans please contact us on 01279 464 470 or email [email protected]

 


5 Tips To Prepare Yourself For A Ransomware Attack

We are seeing an increasing number of cases of Ransomware attacks.

Paying ransoms to hackers does not guarantee the safe return of your files so it is best to take preventative actions you should take to protect your machine. The best defense against viruses such as Cryptolocker is to be aware of how your machine can become infected. Even if you are cautious with the websites you visit and the attachments you open, the disguises hackers use are often very deceptive and it is easier than you may think to be tricked into opening a malicious link. It is most important that you regularly back up your files to ensure that if you are caught out you won’t lose your most important documents. It is not just corporations and companies that are targeted – make sure you have copies of your photos saved to an alternative device, don’t lose your precious memories.

These are our top tips on how to stay safe from Ransomware and information on how you may become infected. If you would like any information on back up solutions or if you have any enquiries email us at [email protected] or call on 01279 464 470.

Ransomware draft two

 


Ransomware is one of the most unpleasant infections with no known cure

cryptolocker

Ransomware is one of the most unpleasant virus or malware infections, and with no known cure, it poses one of the most serious threats to company and personal data across the globe. In recent weeks there has been a sharp spike in the number of reported infections, so what can you do to protect your valuable data?[vc_separator style=”separator1″]

What is Ransomware?

Essentially, ransomware encrypts documents and images on a computer. Worse still, if the computer is attached to a corporate network, it will infect everything it can see, and will only notify the user once it has finished encrypting all of the data it can find. Usually a pop up window will appear informing the user that all of their data has been encrypted and the only way to decrypt or release the data is to pay a fee to the crooks who created the infection. The amount of ransom demanded seems to vary from a few hundred dollars to several thousand.

How does it infect my PC?

As with virtually all Viruses and Malware infections, Ransomware is usually delivered in an email attachment. There has been a recent trend in emails that claim to be invoices, or confirmations of an order. The emails are worded quite well, and are clearly very plausible, as the number of infections reported in the past few weeks have rocketed

So how do you remove it?

There are many types of infection, but the way Ransomware infects computer networks does not vary much. If you are lucky, you may try to open an infected file quite soon after your computer has been infected. We say lucky, because if you can catch the infection early you may be able to prevent all of your valuable data from being encrypted. Remember that if you are on a network, the Ransomware will infect all of the data it can access, which can take time – days in some cases. Only once it has finished delivering its payload of poison, will it notify its victims.
crypto

If you are on a network, the first thing to do is to unplug the network lead from the back of your computer. If the infection started from your computer, disconnecting it from the network will stop the infection from spreading. Then shut down your system and seek professional help. If you are on a corporate network, hopefully you will not have any data saved locally! If you have, then there is a good chance most or all of your data will be encrypted. The bad news is that there is no way to decrypt your precious data without paying a ransom to the crooks. The good news is that if you have a recent backup of your data, then you should be able to restore it without too much difficulty. Obviously you have to make sure that you have found and cleared the infection before you restore your data, otherwise you may find that your data is encrypted again. If you are on a network, then your administrator should be notified immediately so they can take appropriate action to protect and cleanse the network.

Should I pay the fine?

We would always say NO, as dealing with crooks is not a good idea. However, we are aware that some people are so desperate that they have paid to release their files.

How can you protect your system from this type of infection?

Let’s be very clear, there is no way to 100% guarantee your system will never be infected by viruses or malware. There are new types of infections being created every day, and the leading Anti-Virus and Anti-Malware companies are in a permanent state of “Catch Up” Unfortunately, until a virus is created there is no way to find a cure. Below are the main points of trying to keep your data safe:

1. Backup your data – Backup your data – Backup your data. Make sure that your backups are working. Don’t just check to see if it backed up last night, actually try a test restore to make sure that the backup is effective. ALWAYS keep a copy off-site at another location. Or better still, use a remote backup service. N.B. If you do get infected, make sure that you disable the backups whilst you are cleaning your system, otherwise you will back up the infected files

2. Anti-Virus/Malware protection – Purchase a decent brand, and make sure it is up to date.

3. Be very careful with ALL email attachments –If you have even the slightest doubt, do not open the attachment. Look at it this way, what’s the worst that can happen if you don’t open a genuine email? You might receive a reminder for an unpaid bill but compared to losing all of your data this is insignificant. Never open any attachment unless you are 100% certain of its authenticity.

4. Make sure you do point 1!

The above points are only basic precautions, naturally, there are many other ways to try and protect your data. If you are in any doubt seek advice from IT professionals. For any enquiries email us at [email protected] or call us on 01279 464470.