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Can Micro Focus Help Fight Ransomware? The Answer Is Yes!

Gil Cattelain

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September 13, 2017 1:43 pm

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Ransomware—a form of malware that encrypts files and user machines for ransom—remains one of the top threats facing businesses today. According to a new report, ransomware has risen by over 250 percent so far in 2017. And the U.S. is directly in the cross hairs as the country that is most affected by it.

One reason ransomware is so devastating is that there is still a major knowledge gap surrounding it. Most business leaders are well aware that ransomware exists, but they are in the dark about the best ways to combat it.

Unfortunately, there is little that can be done to prevent ransomware attacks. And like it or not, hackers will eventually find your organization and make it their target. Fortunately, Micro Focus offers several solutions that can help to improve visibility and responsiveness, making it possible for you to stay on top of attacks and prevent them from cascading across your network.

Here are some specific ransomware-related challenges that Micro Focus can help you overcome:

Challenge: Many enterprises are still running unpatched software versions that can be easily exploited. 

Solution: Micro Focus offers two solutions that can help in ZENworks Patch Management (ZPM), for security patching, and ZENworks Configuration Management (ZCM), which can scan all operating systems on your network to ensure that they are up to date with the latest software versions.

Older versions of Windows, such as XP and v. 7, need to be removed because they are no longer supported. Continuing to use these programs could leave your enterprise vulnerable to ransomware attacks.

Challenge: Infected files are being renamed to .wncry or similar types.

Solution: Micro Focus offers File Reporter and Storage Manager, both of which can scan databases for infected files. When using File Reporter be sure to limit access control lists (ACLs) so that end users have only bare minimum rights to the file system and cannot infect other files on the network.

Challenge: Infected files can be synced back to the main server.

Solution: This issue can be addressed using Micro Focus Filr, which is a file access and sharing suite. Filr offers a special “block” list that can prevent certain files from being synced with the server. With WannaCry, for instance, all files labeled “.wncry” can be specifically blacklisted.

Keep in mind that the latest version of Filr also contains a new file versioning feature. So if a file gets infected with ransomware, users can simply roll back to an earlier version.

Challenge: Many users fall victim to email phishing schemes and infected internet downloads.

Solution: To address phishing schemes, Micro Focus offers Secure Gateway, which can prevent emails with malware, spam, or viruses from reaching users’ mailboxes. And to mitigate the risks of infected internet downloads, there is Micro Focus Retain. Instead of paying a ransom, IT teams can restore systems without worrying about data loss, knowing that critical information is safely stored on Retain’s servers. Retain is also a useful tool for cleaning up old emails, to prevent them from being exposed.

Challenge: Enterprises face the risk of insider or targeted attacks from privileged users.

Solution: To address this challenge, NetIQ® Change Guardian™ offers the ability to monitor critical files, systems and applications in real time to detect unauthorized privileged-user activity, helping you significantly reduce organizational risk to critical assets.

Challenge: Getting rights management right.

Solution: With Micro Focus Storage Manager, your organization can keep a tight rein who has rights to what. Storage Manager enables you to automatically assign rights to only those who need them and then remove the rights when they are no longer needed.

Challenge: Securing and managing endpoints and individual mobile devices can be an IT nightmare.

Solution: Micro Focus ZENworks Configuration Management (ZCM) makes managing endpoints a dream. It offers a complete Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) solution that locks down endpoints and provides automated, identity-centric management for the most time-consuming tasks. And Micro Focus ZENworks Endpoint Security Management (ZESM) brings centralized, identity-based security to your most vulnerable IT assets—the mobile PCs at the edges of your organization.

Challenge: Limited visibility into network assets.

Solution: Oftentimes, businesses have little to no visibility into assets such as network shares. In fact, many of today’s businesses actually have more network shares than employees. Such assets can get discovered and exploited by hackers and can be used to infect larger portions of the network. Micro Focus File Reporter can be used to automatically scan a network for shares and ensure that they are either patched or disabled. Also make sure your shares are configured for SMB v2, since most ransomware spreads over insecure SMB v1.

So don’t wait for ransomware to cripple your organization. To learn more about how Micro Focus can protect your business, click here.

Thanks for reading!

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Categories: Announcements, Business Continuity, Configuration Management, Endpoint Protection Suite, Endpoint Security, Expert Views, File Analysis & Management, File Management Suite, File Reporter, File Services and Management, Filr, Information Management & Governance, IT Operations Management, Mobile, Security, Storage Manager, ZENworks, ZENworks Endpoint Security Management, ZENworks Full Disk Encryption, ZENworks Patch Management, ZENworks Suite

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