As you may have heard, during the last week there was a major outbreak of a new variant of ransomware called WannaCry or WannaCrypt, with users being asked to pay a ransom to have their files decrypted.

The good news for our customers is that the Forsythes Managed AntiVirus solution, based on Webroot SecureAnywhere, does protect against Wannacry. As Forsythes Managed IT Support customers, you also have your servers and workstations regularly patched against security vulnerabilities. We also tighten security on servers through policies to prevent many ransomware variants from running.

What else can be done?

Besides best-in-class antivirus protection and regular security patching, you can protect yourself by being aware of how ransomware attacks. Most often, ransomware takes hold via phishing. Phishing can be a website or an email that asks you to click a link or open an attachment and the ransomware is allowed into your IT environment through these clicks. For example, many of the early phishing emails were titled “You have a package for delivery”, inviting you to open the attachment which contained the ransomware.

User education is critical in preventing infections. Be suspicious of the following:

  • Message contains mismatched links. E.g. the link might say but when you hover over the link the URL points to
  • Emails with poor grammar and spelling from organisations.
  • Messages that ask for personal information. E.g. the email may appear to be PayPal asking you to click a link and verify your details.
  • An offer that seems too good to be true.
  • An action that you didn’t initiate. E.g. like winning the lottery when you didn’t buy a ticket.
  • Something just doesn’t look right.

We’re here to help

If you’re unsure at all, it is always best to give us a call. Our team can quickly identify a phishing email. If you’d like to talk to us more about ways to protect yourself against ransomware, please drop us a line.