5 Ways to Protect Your Organization Against Ransomware


From businesses and government organizations to universities and healthcare companies, ransomware news has been dominating the headlines recently. In fact, “There were more than 304 million ransomware attacks worldwide last year and it’s estimated that a new organization is attacked every 11-14 seconds,” according to Unitrends.

At first glance, it can be frightening to think about potential cyberattacks compromising your organization. However, with proper preparation and defense, you can rest assured that your organization will stay protected and secure. That’s what Varsity is here for.

What is Ransomware?

Ransomware occurs as a form of malicious software that is designed to block access to a computer or another device until a sum of money is paid. Oftentimes, the victim has a set amount of time to pay the cybercriminal before losing access to their device’s data.

Typically, ransomware happens when a victim mistakenly downloads malware from emails or unknown sources. There are many forms of ransomware, ranging from ransomware as a service to ransomware targeting specific mobile devices, which Norton details in this helpful article. While some forms may be more harmful than others, understanding the different types of attacks is important to be aware of in order to protect your organization and your employees. Here are five concrete steps you can take to ensure your defense measures up.

  1. Determine Your Ransomware Risk

One of the most important first steps is to determine your organization’s ransomware risk. This will help you decide the level of protection your organization will need. You should prioritize conducting tests that assess your current state of preparedness in terms of tools, processes, and skills to defend against attacks. It’s also important to establish processes and procedures in the event of a ransomware attack.

Wondering where to begin? Varsity can help! We offer a variety of security assessment services, such as vulnerability tests and pen scans. Reach out to us to see how we can assess your ransomware risk. A conversation now can start saving you time, money, and headaches.

  1. Ensure Proper Protection

Once you have evaluated your organization’s ransomware risk, it’s important to ensure you have proper security protection. According to Phil Venables, the Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer of Google Cloud, “safeguards may include frameworks like zero trust that protect and strongly authenticate user access and device integrity, segment environments, authenticate executables, filter spam, and malware.”

Varsity offers a variety of security protection services specific to your organization. From anti ransomware to email protection, we will work diligently to keep your organization safe.

  1. Backup Data to the Cloud

Backing up your data to the Cloud is crucial to keep information safe. Storing data in the Cloud allows you to access it anywhere and prevents data from being compromised by a ransomware attack. You can start by reviewing Google’s helpful guide to security transformation that outlines steps for a “risk-informed, rather than risk-avoidance, approach to security with the Cloud.”

If you’re interested in managed Cloud infrastructure services, consider Varsity. We can help you manage, support, and scale-up your organization to the Cloud. We’ll create the best solution for your organization at the lowest cost possible. Just contact us to find out!

  1. Test Often and Detect Early

Testing your organization’s infrastructure and being prepared to detect ransomware attacks early are key strategies to prevent serious damage to your organization. Ensure your backup and recovery infrastructure is in place by routinely checking your backup applications, as well as storage and network access points. Additionally, implementing early ransomware detection such as predictive analytics and machine learning to recognize possible attacks. The sooner the better!

Through Varsity’s disaster recovery services, your organization will be protected in the event of a ransomware attack. Services include disaster planning, cloud backup, application backup (Salesforce, Microsoft 365, Google), and more.

  1. Educate and Train Your Team

Above all, preparing your organization’s employees to be aware of scams, as well as the proper protocol if ransomware attacks occur, is critical. Paul Webber, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, recommends using “cyber crisis simulation tools for mock drills and training that provide closer to real-life situations for better preparedness of end users against ransomware.”

If you’re looking for assistance with staff training, look no further than Varsity. Our team of IT professionals can provide cybersecurity training for your organization.

As ransomware threats continue to evolve, having a strategic plan in place is key to safeguarding your organization. Additionally, having proper protection, storing data securely in the cloud, testing your organization’s infrastructure often, and educating your team are all equally important steps to save your data.

Interested in learning more about how Varsity can level up your defense against ransomware? Reach out for conversation with a member of our team today.