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6 Tips to avoid ransomware

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Staying secure against ransomware doesn’t have to be hard.   Here are a few tips to get you started right away!

  1. Backup regularly and keep a recent backup copy off-line and off-site. There are dozens of ways other than ransomware that files can suddenly vanish, such as fire, flood, theft, a dropped laptop or even an accidental delete. Encrypt your backup and you won’t have to worry about the backup device falling into the wrong hands.

  2. Enable file extensions. The default Windows setting is to have file extensions disabled, meaning you have to rely on the file thumbnail to identify it. Enabling extensions makes it much easier to spot file types that wouldn’t commonly be sent to you and your users, such as JavaScript.

  3. Don’t enable macros in document attachments received via email. Microsoft deliberately turned off auto-execution of macros by default many years ago as a security measure. A lot of infections rely on persuading you to turn macros back on, so don’t do it!

  4. Be cautious about unsolicited attachments. The crooks are relying on the dilemma that you shouldn’t open a document until you are sure it’s one you want, but you can’t tell if it’s one you want until you open it. If in doubt leave it out.

  5. Don’t give yourself more login power than you need. Don’t stay logged in as an administrator any longer than is strictly necessary and avoid browsing, opening documents or other regular work activities while you have administrator rights.

  6. Patch early, patch often. Malware that doesn’t come in via a document often relies on security bugs in popular applications, including Microsoft Office, your browser, Flash and more. The sooner you patch, the fewer holes there are to be exploited.

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Topics: IT Blog, Hacking, internet security