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Don’t Let Ransomware Ruin Your Business

Gil Cattelain

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December 17, 2018 12:22 pm

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Everyone has heard of WannaCry and NotPetya, two of the most devastating ransomware attacks in history. WannaCry cost businesses somewhere between $4-8 billion, and losses due to NotPetya are estimated at more than $10 billion, making it the most destructive attack in history from a cost perspective.

The extent of the damage to businesses goes far beyond the initial intrusion point and infected attachments of downloads on a single device.  These attacks are self-propagating, meaning the use network and software vulnerabilities to gain access to other networked devices and data.  As a result, they have the ability to cripple entire enterprises.

What’s worse is that most attacks – including these two – are not zero-day exploits.  In fact, Microsoft actually released a patch to repair the vulnerability that would be exploited by WannaCry and NotPetya in March of 2017, a month before either attack was launched.  Why, then, were these attacks so devastating?  Simply, because too many businesses lack sufficient staff or tools to effectively prevent them.

Protecting corporate assets is a tremendous responsibility placed on IT teams, and the only real solution to ransomware and other cyber attacks is to prevent them from infecting users in the first place.  But, it’s a task that is too vast and complex to be handled without the right tools and automation.

The Micro Focus ZENworks Suite of Unified Endpoint Management products includes tools specifically designed to help IT teams cope with not only WannaCry and NotPetya, but vast number of cyber attacks on businesses today.  From intrusion to infection and propagation, ZENworks provides a holistic solution for protecting enterprise endpoints and assets.

Patch Management

ZENworks Patch Management helps IT teams proactively manage threats by automating the patch management process across operating systems and application vendors.  From collection to analysis to delivery, IT teams can automate the entire patch management systems to scan for, report on, and repair potential threats, including identification and updating of outdated anti-malware and antivirus definitions. Comprehensive dashboards and reporting easily identifies non-compliant devices that expose the entire enterprise and allow IT teams to take appropriate action.

Endpoint Security Management

ZENworks Endpoint Security Management provides threat mitigation during attacks through policy-based control over all devices based on controlled and adaptive security policies.

  • Firewalls can be set up to block all outgoing traffic to stop malicious applications and prevent propagation of ransomware.
  • Application-level control can be used to blacklist known malicious apps and executables, such as those WannaCry and NotPetya used to hijack passwords and gain remote access to devices. Location-based control can even limit launching applications based on users’ local security.
  • Storage devices can also be blocked, including USB flash drives to eliminate the threat of malicious software being transferred between devices.

In addition to providing active monitoring and controls to prevent successful attacks, the Micro Focus Connected MX also enables constant policy-based backup of critical server and endpoint data, ensuring corporate information can be recovered if it ever becomes necessary.

Security experts widely agree the key to prevention is keeping patches up-to-date.  What’s certain is the number and complexity of attacks is only going to grow, increasing the burden on IT.  But, with a comprehensive set of mobility and endpoint management tools, like the ZENworks Suite, IT teams are much better positioned to successfully protect their enterprise devices and users and save millions of dollars, time, and corporate reputations.

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Categories: Expert Views, General, PR Blog, Unified Endpoint Management, ZENworks

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