Kaspersky Lab: Have a Joyous Holiday and New Year

Ransomware is a malware, that locks your devices or encrypts your files, and then tells you that you have to pay ransom to get your data back.  It is not cheap and there is no guarantee of success.  There are essentially two types of ransomware; namely, cryptos that encrypt files to make them inaccessible, and blockers, which simply block a computer or other device rendering it inoperable.

A close to home large organization in Malaysia was reported to have been a victim of ransomware, which the company was asked to pay the ransom in Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency.  More severe being North Carolina county government which went into crawling due to ransomware.  The ransomware attack had forced officials in Mecklenburg County to quarantine 48 of the 500 servers the municipal relies on for daily government operations. The hackers had asked for a $23,000 ransom, which the county manager says will not be paid.  The attack has left county workers using paper and pen to handle tax payments, jail services, child support, and the myriad other municipal services they manage — the fallout that may continue for many days or even weeks.

In view of the many cases of data being held hostage, Kaspersky Lab had introduced free ransomware decryptors, that businesses and consumers can use. These tools are available at  noransom.kaspersky.com.  The website itself is easy to use. Just type the file extension, email or any other information mentioned on the locked screen, and the portal will guide the user on the method to decrypt – where available.  Businesses can opt for the free Kaspersky Anti-Ransomware Tool for Business provides protection from ransomware.

How Much is Enough for IT Security

Kaspersky Lab and B2B International interviewed 6,687 respondents from companies with up to 4,999 employees, from 29 countries, working in different industries and company sizes, and came out with the Kaspersky IT Security Calculator to assist businesses in IT security budgeting.

As the businesses are approaching the year end and preparing what is ahead in 2019, this tool provides a good platform for the businesses.

According to Yeo Siang Tiong, General Manager, SEA, Kaspersky Lab, IT security is often asked by the senior management and decision maker whether it is a cost centre or strategic investment, where something crucial to the business continuity in the face of growing threats, and bringing measurable benefits.

“The Kaspersky Lab Global Corporate IT Security Risks Survey, an annual study to provide an update on the state of IT security in businesses across the world revealed that the IT budgets are being squeezed on a global scale.  With the budgets under pressure, IT security teams are facing a real challenge, having to do more with less, while the threats continue to rise.  The massive impact of WannaCry, exPetr as well as other ransomwares that are now widely targeting large organizations, would have shook the global businesses and opened many eyes to the cyberthreats organizations can face in the world today.  Businesses need to do the math on cost of proactively fighting cyberthreats versus the cost of becoming a victim,” Yeo said.

To Maximise Holidays

According to our recent survey, “Growing businesses safely: cloud adoption vs security concerns,” only 44% of companies with 50–250 employees have a dedicated security department.

At 2% of businesses, this role is not managed at all, and in 54% of them, security functions are managed as part of overall IT work — which doesn’t necessarily mean that IT specialists manage security; 1 in 5 companies delegate IT tasks to non-specialist staff such as accountants, office administrators, and managers.

Another part of the problem is a shortage of resources. Many companies, and particularly those in the SMB segment, cannot afford to hire a high-profile specialist.

The cybersecurity sector is one of the hottest job market verticals in the world.  Finding the right talents would be an uphill task at the moment.

Security as a Service (SaaS) Could Be The Answer

Alongside a traditional on-premise security approach, SMBs can look at two viable alternatives to give them the additional expertise and support they need, within their budget and resource capabilities. One problem can be solved in different ways and for small and mid-sized businesses, the main thing is to find the most beneficial solution.

We have already discussed the merits of cloud services as a way to reduce complexities and take advantage of economies of scale and the same is true when it comes to IT security.

By taking a SaaS approach to security, SMBs can take advantage of endpoint security solutions without having the hefty budgets of enterprise counterparts. It can help VSBs easily control costs, simplify and centralize their IT security whilst gaining access to vital protection and expertise.

Despite the diverse range of security solutions on the market today, SMBs are still limited by resources and budgets when looking for their best fit solution.  SaaS security products available via subscription – such as Kaspersky Endpoint Security Cloud – enable smaller businesses to take advantage of market leading technology that meets their needs, avoiding hefty hardware costs. This gives them a great alternative to help make the most of available budgets and expertise, ensuring that vital resources are left available to invest into strategic business development and future growth.

To meet the growing complexities around the volume of mobile devices they need to protect and the fast evolving threat landscape, working with an expert to garner intelligence and insight will bolster SMBs defences and help them make the most out of available budgets for complete protection.

By working with a third party, SMBs can bring on board experts in the field without having to find the high budgets to hire someone internally and will have access to a high-level of IT security support and expertise. This is particularly important as skills need to be constantly enhanced, in line with the changes and implications of threat vectors.

To help SMBs combat the ever growing number of threats with limited budgets and expertise, SaaS and IT outsourcing are viable options, alongside traditional on-premise security approaches, to help small businesses make the most of available spend and resources.

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