How to Prepare if You are Targeted by a Cybercriminal

Ransomware is getting more specific of its targets. Why does this matter? It's more strategic nature, means that it’s also going to be more effective. The bad guys are now studying their targets to identify weaknesses in order to exploit them. In most cases, the ransom amounts are based on the target's ability to pay. Research pays off.

So what do you do if you find out that your company is being targeted for a Cyberattack?

Here are a few steps to take to protect your business.

1. Education is the strongest tool in your arsenal. An educated employee will be less likely to fall for scams that will allow the bad guys to enter your network.

Training can be as simple as sharing these few steps.

  • A phony domain can be easy to spot as long as you are looking. Double-check the domain name that sent the email.

  • Poor grammer is not an accident. Look for spelling errors as well as numbers replacing letters.

  • If something sounds wrong, it usually is. Review the signature & legitimacy of the request.

  • How are your hovering skills? If you hover over links – without clicking – you can check where they lead.

  • This should be obvious but...don’t click on attachments unless you’re sure of the source.

2. Think onion, layers are your best option for security. Nothing is fail proof so the more layers, the better.

A good Firewall is the place to start. A firewall's job is to stop suspicious things from entering your network. Next, a VPN is a must if you have any remote workers or employees that do a lot of traveling. VPN or Virtual Private Network, allows for a secure connection between your remote workers and your business network. Finally, email security software will help to filter out potential threats that are sent to your inbox.

Back up, back up, back up! Business backups these days no longer require you to do anything except make sure that it is running properly. A back up essentially allows you to cut ties with data or files that are being held for ransom and start up a brand new, identical copy of you entire business.

We hope this helps. As a Managed Service Provider in Utah, we have seen too many good businesses go under because of cybercriminals.


A little about the author. Applied Integration is a Managed IT Service Provider that works with companies to add to or supplement their IT Departments. Operating in Salt Lake City servicing companies in Utah and nationwide for over 20 years, they specialize in IT Solutions, computer support, IT Management and software support including Microsoft 365, Windows 10 and Spruce POS systems.

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