Disaster recovery plans are critical to successful mitigation, containment and recovery of data after a ransomware attack. Cybersecurity defenses are never entirely impenetrable, so organizations must have backups and the right plan in place after an incident. In this article, systems engineer and cybersecurity expert Ravi Bahethi discusses how recovery plans and proper backups reduce the cost of data recovery and downtime.
How Ransomware Attacks Threaten Your Data
Ransomware has become one of the fastest-growing forms of cyberattacks in recent years. A majority of malicious emails now contain ransomware. Ransomware is typically placed in a business’s IT environment through its user community. Attackers send multiple emails to users, and when triggered, the ransomware infiltrates all of an organization’s IT systems. While data theft is designed to remove sensitive data from a company’s systems, ransomware is designed to lock up data inside an IT system, making it unusable. The attacker then demands payment to release the hold of the ransomware on the systems. Ransomware attacks can have a severe, negative impact on an unprepared business’s operations and reputation.
Disaster Recovery Is More Than Backing Up Data
Backing up data is vitally important, but it is crucial to understand how it differs from disaster recovery. Backing up data is the way we protect data by making extra copies that can be accessed and restored in the event of data loss. Disaster recovery involves a comprehensive plan to get applications, IT resources, and data back online after an outage. Disaster recovery is designed to protect business continuity.
Assess Your Current Recovery and Restoration Status
It is best to make a frank assessment of how long your business can face IT system downtime without a critical impact. You should evaluate each system’s value, vulnerability, and the cost of restoration in developing a disaster recovery plan. Some operating systems can take hours or multiple days to be reinstalled, updated, tested, and brought back online.
Cloud Services Can Provide Serious Disaster Resiliency
Networks and telephony with onsite infrastructure can result in significant downtime in the event of a ransomware or other cyberattack. Using a managed cloud service for networking, telephone service, and other software applications and processes can provide a secure layer of protection against outside attacks. In addition to cyberattacks, cloud services protect against natural disasters and interruption of local services.
Assign and Train a Disaster Recovery Team
When you are comfortable with the disaster recovery and backup plan your business needs, you need to be sure that the right people will be able to implement the plan when required to minimize downtime or data loss. Each system should have a sufficient number of team members designated and trained on assessing risks and taking appropriate steps to safeguard systems when possible.
About Ravi Bahethi
Ravi Bahethi is a systems engineer and programmer with a strong interest in all things technological. He works hard to provide his government and industry clients with customizable and cost-effective integration solutions and protections against cyber attacks and other threats. Ravi Bahethi is a systems engineer and programmer working in Fortran 77, Fortran 90, C/C++ and SQL on a variety of platforms, including OpenVMS, Tru64 Unix, IRIX, Linux and Windows. When he is not busy managing Maryland-based Terranet Inc., Ravi enjoys taking long walks and playing tennis.