October is here, but Halloween isn’t the only spooky thing to think about this month. It’s also National Cybersecurity Awareness Month – a time for businesses of all sizes to turn their attention to digital diligence and combating cyber threats.

Originally launched in 2004, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month has taken on even greater importance in 2020. Cybercrime has surged this year as organizations have shifted to remote work due to the health crisis. This includes a measurable rise in multi-stage ransomware attacks that are culminating in substantial losses in productivity and revenue.

The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) calls ransomware “the most visible cybersecurity risk playing out across our nation’s networks.” To help organizations limit damage and recover smartly, CISA has developed recommendations, including a three-pronged strategy to mitigate risk.

Actions for today

Proactive efforts can go a long way toward mitigating the impact of a ransomware attack.

  • Back up data, system images, and configurations.
  • Make sure security solutions are up to date.
  • Review and exercise incident response plans.

Actions to recover

With the increasing sophistication of ransomware attacks, it’s impossible to eliminate all risk. If threats make their way through the above protections, knowing what to do immediately following a ransomware attack can help reduce its impact.

  • Ask for help. Contact the CISA, FBI, or Secret Service.
  • Isolate infected systems and phase a return to operations.
  • Review connections of business relations (customers, partners, vendors) that touch your network.
  • Assess impact of the attack to prioritize a full recovery.

Actions to go forward

A ransomware attack isn’t something anyone wants to repeat. Creating a more secure environment is an important step in moving ahead.

  • Ensure good cyber hygiene.
  • Segment networks to make it harder for cybercriminals to move around and infect multiple systems.
  • Develop containment strategies to make it more difficult to access data and systems.
  • Know your system’s baseline for recovery, review recovery procedures, and validate goals.

Pure’s Approach to Mitigating the Impact of Ransomware Attacks

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is an ideal time to reflect on why it’s important to safeguard your data. As one of your most important assets, the security and stability of your data is one of the most important insurance policies you can have.

To help you develop new and better strategies to modernize data protection and mitigate the impact of ransomware, we’re sharing some of our favorite data protection-related content – with a few best practices to guide your cybersecurity plans for the coming year.  

  • Modernize your backup
    Find out why all-flash storage is a data backup game changer that can serve as a valuable insurance policy following a ransomware attack.
    Read the post
  • How to protect against ransomware threats
    See how to speed critical recovery times when a ransomware attack targets backup data, backup catalogs, and even storage array snapshots.
    Read the post  
  • Pure’s unique solution
    Learn how to outwit cyber criminals targeting backup data and prevent backups from being compromised with Immutability Plus via FlashBlade® SafeMode snapshots.
    Get the Solution Brief 

Want to Learn More?

Take the next step in modernizing your data protection solutions. Understand your risk of a ransomware attack, protect your business from ransomware attacks, and be sure to follow more on social with the hashtag #BeCyberSafe.

Hear from frequent Pure Report guest and Principal SE Andrew Miller about what we’ve been learning about ransomware intrusions, the trifecta of defense principles, and how Pure can help. Andrew also covers the top 5 questions we’re hearing from IT around implementing protection, and dives into 2 actual attack examples and the resulting recovery efforts in the podcast: