By now many people have heard about the Ransom attack on the City of Dallas. But if you haven't here is the short version of the story.
Monday, May 1st, 2023, the cybercrime syndicate Royal successfully infiltrated the City of Dallas' IT infrastructure using a Ransomware Attack. This attack occurred as a result of a phishing campaign against the city. It is currently not being reported as to who, or how many, within the organization was phished. Nevertheless, Royal was able to successfully compromise the City of Dallas and hold them for Ransom!
What can we learn from this attack to reduce the likeliness that other government offices and businesses connected to these offices are less likely to fall victim?
The Internet is full of standards and best practices you can follow. But I'm going to shortcut all that for you.
Why Should you listen to anything I have to say about this?
My name is Clint Brinkley. I'm CEO of Your Business Solutions, an award winning 19 year old MSP, recognized by INC5000 and Houston Businesss Journal. I'm the host of Tech Talk with Clint on StepUp Radio 2-time Best-Selling Author on the topics of Technology and most recently on Cybersecurity. You may check out my most recent book, "YOU Are The #1 Target" Click Here. Plus, My organization frequently gives back to our community to ensure we are all safe, productive and profitable!
What does your organization need?
- Training - Yes I know, one more thing to do... But without it, you can put every safeguard in the world in place, just to have the weakest link in your organization (YES, that dumbass that just came to mind when you read that!) basically opens the front door and leaves it open for every criminal to walk in undeterred. Get your staff the training they need to give your organization a fighting chance!>
- Backups - Everyone loves to say, "Oh we have great backups. Done every night! We never have to worry about that." However, that is furthest from the truth. Because when I ask ONE small question, over 98% of people we ask CANNOT answer it. The question is, "When is the last time you tested your backups and checked its configuration?" Not only can they NOT answer that but they had NO IDEA that it wasn't backing up everything necessary and there were failures they were not even aware of.
- Anti-Virus - Not all are created equally. But that isn't your biggest issue. Your biggest issue is that you rolled out the Anti-Virus software however many months ago and left it. You never check on it. Are the updates being done? Did you configure it to the Best Practice standards to provide optimal protection or did you leave it at the default configuration when installed? Or the worst of all, is it even running on the system anymore?!? YES! That last one will surprise you. Out of the over 2000 assessments performed by our Cybersecurity team in the last 12 months, every single environment found not one or two but several computers without Anti-Virus even running on it! Tighten it up!
- Firewall - First off, STOP thinking that your ISP (Comcast, AT&T or whoever) is providing you a firewall. They are not! They provide you with a modem on the cable circuits or a router on the fiber circuits. Routers, ARE NOT FIREWALLS!!! Firewalls have active technology in them to defend your network. However, like Anti-Virus, DO NOT leave the firewall configured using the default configuration. And stop using the "Wizard" to setup your firewall. Firewalls are complex and need to be programmed by a professional. Think of it like this, You wouldn't hire your General Practitioner to Perform Brain Surgery... would you?
This is a great starting point. If you're serious about safeguarding your network, staff and client information and would like professional assistance, visit: https://www.ybs.us/cybersecuritybook/ for our limited time Cybersecurity Assessment.