At PDI Security Solutions, we see ransomware attacks on a daily basis. However, those attacks typically don’t show up as news alerts or headlines in national news media. That’s where the attack on the Colonial Pipeline stands out. Yet the underlying issues of all ransomware attacks are generally the same. Our goal is to help organizations prevent such attacks by malicious criminals looking to profit from corporate weaknesses.
Today’s businesses are increasingly at risk for exposure due to ransomware and the ever-evolving tactics and techniques of threat actors. That coincides with IT and InfoSec teams being sheltered at home for months, as one of the many professions uniquely geared for working remotely during the pandemic.
Because of the remote work setup, suspicious activities that might have normally been observed in the office no longer are. For instance, when the security software for an on-premise workstation displays an alert about something suspicious, that would have historically resulted in a call to InfoSec by the employee. In today’s WFH world, if those alerts aren’t centrally logged and monitored, they might go completely undetected. Compounding this issue is the fact that remote teams who actually recognize the gap might not have the necessary means to install new security tools remotely without physically interacting with the systems.
The escalation of cyberthreats
It has become common in recent high-visibility attacks for cybercriminals to not only lock down internal systems with ransomware, but also exfiltrate massive amounts of corporate and customer data—holding it for ransom against the threat of public release. One of the primary reasons businesses even consider paying the ransom is to avoid the risk of exposing sensitive customer information. In fact, the most recent and popular malware has built-in tools to exfiltrate data specifically for this reason.
It wasn’t long ago that the big question was whether your organization would get targeted and compromised. Today, it’s more a matter of when that happens. If you’re still relying on purely detective measures—such as SIEM and/or legacy edge security systems—to keep attackers out of environments where non-technical users interact with the Internet, you aren’t prepared to handle advanced threats.
When your users click on something they shouldn’t (and they inevitably will at some point), you must have the capability to:
- Recognize that a security event happened
- Respond immediately to the threat, either by terminating the infection or going further to isolate that user and system from all other corporate assets
The growing need for better security tools and expertise
The notion of completely preventing attackers from getting inside your organization using edge security products is a relic of past decades, especially in the era of remote working. Instead, you must be able to detect and respond to advanced threats and malicious actors. And, no, that’s not a simple or easy task.
Making sure you have the right security tools on your systems is a good start, but you also need trained cybersecurity analysts to monitor those tools. To help secure our customers and their data, we utilize Extended Detection and Response (XDR). This approach combines the latest endpoint software with 24/7/365 monitoring of network, application, cloud, and system logs to prevent, detect, and enable active response from our Security Operations Center (SOC).
When you consider how sophisticated cybercriminals have become and what’s at stake, how confident are you that your organization is prepared for this challenge? If you’re not sure, it might be time to re-evaluate your cybersecurity approach so you don’t become just another statistic in the ransomware battle.
To learn more about protecting your business from ransomware and other cyberthreats, contact us.
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