What is Ransomware, and Who Should Be Concerned About It?

What is Ransomware, and Who Should Be Concerned About It?

You have likely heard about ransomware attacks on websites, but you may not completely understand what a ransomware attack is—or who is at risk for ransomware. While a ransomware attack is a form of hacking, the goal is different. While typical hacking is usually out to steal personal information, ransomware is out to make the hacker money.

What Is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a form of malicious software used by cybercriminals to take a website hostage. This is done by encrypting the site’s data or blocking access to the site. It can also involve the site content being replaced by annoying ads, pornography, and more. Once the site is accessed, the criminals will send the site owner a demand for a financial ransom in order to get access to the site back.

Which Websites Are at Risk?

Unfortunately, any website is at risk for malware attacks. Even secure sites can fall victim to an employee or other site administrator clicking on a suspicious link, visiting an unsecured website, or clicking on a phishing email. Many believe that if their site doesn’t collect personal information, it’s not a target for criminals. However, if the goal is not to steal information from the site, but rather hold it hostage, then any site is fair game.

What Is the Best Prevention?

There are several ways that your business website can be protected from ransomware:

  • Up-to-date security certificate
  • Monthly security scans to detect any latent malware
  • Regular website updates to close security holes
  • Full-site backups minimize downtime should a site be hacked
  • Keep your password secure and don’t use it on other sites
  • Education on phishing and suspicious links keeps employees aware of the dangers

Hammersmith Support Makes it Easy

Each of the items listed as the best prevention for ransomware are all part of our comprehensive website maintenance packages. Whether your site needs the Essentials or Premium maintenance services, it will be covered to help prevent a ransomware attack. Schedule your complimentary 30-minute consultation, and let’s discuss how we can support your business.