Tips to Prevent Your Nonprofit From Ransomware Attacks


Nonprofit organizations handle volumes of sensitive data every day. From client records, to donor information and confidential emails, along with hundreds of other transactions.

With cloud based technology solutions like Office 365, users can access and share data from anywhere, on any device, and be more productive by using all of its collaboration features. On the other hand, it’s easier to inadvertently share sensitive information with others both inside and outside of your organization. Last year nearly half of businesses were attacked with ransomware, causing 34% of enterprises to lose revenue and 20% to cease operations immediately. With nonprofits being routinely faced with limited financial resources, few can afford the costs associated with retrieving their stolen data. Below are some tips to protect your nonprofit from a ransomware attack. 

What can nonprofits do to lessen the chances of becoming the next ransomware victim? The FBI has the following tips:

  • Regularly back up data and verify the integrity of those backups. Backups are critical in ransomware incidents; if you are infected, backups may be the best way to recover your critical data.
  • Secure your backups. Ensure backups are not connected to the computers and networks they are backing up. Examples might include securing backups in the cloud or physically storing them offline. It should be noted, some instances of ransomware have the capability to lock cloud-based backups when systems continuously back up in real-time, also known as persistent synchronization.
  • Scrutinize links contained in e-mails and do not open attachments included in unsolicited e-mails.
  • Only download software – especially free software – from sites you know and trust. When possible, verify the integrity of the software through a digital signature prior to execution.
  • Ensure application patches for the operating system, software, and firmware are up to date, including Adobe Flash, Java, Web browsers, etc.
  • Ensure anti-virus and anti-malware solutions are set to automatically update and regular scans are conducted.
  • Disable macro scripts from files transmitted via e-mail. Consider using Office Viewer software to open Microsoft Office files transmitted via e-mail instead of full Office Suite applications.
  • Implement software restrictions or other controls to prevent the execution of programs in common ransomware locations, such as temporary folders supporting popular Internet browsers, or compression/decompression programs, including those located in the AppData/LocalAppData folder.
Protect your Organization & Identify Breaches before they cause damage.
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Topics: ransomware
View the original article from Active-Technologies   Featured Image Courtesty of iStockPhoto/KrulUA
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