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Sarah Doherty: Summer is Here and Data Still Needs to be Protected

Written by Sarah Doherty, iland 

The summer of 2021 is upon us and everyone is excited to get back out and enjoy national parks, oceanfront beaches, amusement parks, campgrounds and so much more. With a large number of employees still working from home and taking time off this summer, it is still critical to protect your organisation’s data as it travels for summer holiday. Ransomware attacks are on the rise and continue to be a disruptive force affecting everything from financial institutions, healthcare to SLED (state and local government and education). Due to the rise in remote work prompted by the pandemic, attacks are up 148%.

Defending your data is more critical than ever

Over the past few years we have seen a steady increase in the number of ransomware attacks and this growing issue has quickly become an extremely profitable criminal enterprise. Targeted organisations often believe that paying the ransom is the most cost-effective way to get data back — and, unfortunately, this may be the truth.

The real issue is that every business that pays to recover their data is directly funding the development of the next generation of this cyber threat. As a result, it continues to advance, with more sophisticated variations and more specific targeted cyber-attacks. The costs continue to increase as well. Recent research from Cybersecurity Ventures predicts that these attacks will cost the global economy 6 trillion annually in 2021! This makes defending your organisation’s data more critical than ever.

The threat of ransomware is inescapable. Every 11 seconds, an organisation is hit with an attack. It’s time to take a proactive, unified approach. Moreover, It is important to remember that securing and defending against ransomware, before it happens, is critical but there is no silver bullet to combat this problem. The reality is that preparing to recover quickly after it happens can be just as important to the long-term viability of your business.

Today’s cloud backup and disaster recovery solutions have evolved with ransomware protection and recovery in mind. Heads of organisations should seek to find an industry leader that provides a combination of air-gapped backup and disaster recovery that can help their organisation avoid worst case scenarios, including paying a ransom, if their data becomes compromised. Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) and Backup as a Service (BaaS) help protect against ransomware attacks by maintaining multiple copies of data, including optional air-gapped copies of data, in secure offsite global data centers.

Another way to help protect against malicious internal or external threats is with Insider Protection which enables you to recover a full backup deleted by mistake, but more importantly it also protects you from malicious attacks from outside threats. Backing up your data locally and offsite is no longer a catch all solution as recent attacks show that backup files are being targeted and destroyed. Attackers are aware of retention policies for your backups as well. Instead of simply deleting your backup files, they may choose to corrupt your production data and continually run a backup job to a cloud target. This ages out any useful recovery points you may have and replaces them with backups of already corrupted data. With Insider Protection, backup files deleted accidentally or maliciously are retained in an air-gapped directory.

Summer is here and it is time to enjoy all that it has to offer, but don’t take a holiday from protecting your data. Cyber criminals aren’t taking time off and are a constant threat to the lifeblood of your organisation, your data. Beware and be prepared and let industry leaders provide you with the right solutions to continue to protect your data no matter the threat.