Ransomware has been around for more than a decade, and the problem is only getting worse. Recently, hospitals and healthcare facilities have been the target of costly ransomware attacks. Luckily, LAN Infotech provides IT services in the Miami area that will protect your business from ransomware.
How Ransomware Works
Ransomware can lock your computer and prevent you from accessing any necessary files until you pay a fee that is usually in bitcoin. Hospitals have become a perfect target for these criminals because they rely upon computers each day to perform critical tasks and update a patient’s medical history. Without having access to these vital records, hospitals are much more likely to pay an exorbitant ransom fee instead of waiting for the IT department.
The Profits of Ransomware
Ransomware has become a widespread problem in the healthcare industry and other businesses simply because it is an efficient and easy weapon for criminals. Initially, it began in Eastern Europe in 2005 and has now grown much more sophisticated. Usually, a victim unknowingly downloads ransomware through a phishing scam. Phishing scams often involve downloading an e-mail attachment or getting redirected to an URL address that downloads the malware directly to your computer. Depending on the complexity, ransomware can also encrypt files stored on a server, effectively eliminating the ability to restore your computer from a previous backup. In 2014, the FBI estimated that one particular type of malware was responsible for stealing $27 million in only six months from unsuspecting people and businesses.
How Hospitals can Prevent Further Damage
Once a hospital is attacked with ransomware, it can cause mass confusion and panic for doctors and nurses. If you believe that your servers and computers have been affected with ransomware, it is best to shut down the network as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Turning off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth is also an effective way of preventing the spread of malware. During this time, hospitals will have to revert to using paper records because they will be unable to access electronic files until they find a resolution to the ransomware crisis.
Recovering from Ransomware
Once the ransomware is detected, it is critical to identify which strain of malware that has infected the hospital’s networks and computers. Our professionals at LAN Infotech offer IT services to Miami businesses that can quickly detect malware and give you the best advice in handling multiple variants of ransomware. Depending on the malware, we have tools that can bypass the encryption and completely restore the inaccessible files.
If the encryption cannot be bypassed, the best form of action is to restore the data from backups. If no backups are available, data may still be recovered through Shadow Copy files and other methods. Under no circumstances should a hospital or business pay criminals to unlock computers. The only way to eliminate ransomware in the future is to take preventative actions and create secure backups in case of an emergency. If you believe that you have been infected with this form of malware, don’t panic— let our IT services professionals in Miami help you recover every ounce of data without paying any exorbitant fees to criminals. Contact us today for more information.