How Do Ransomware Attacks Start? 

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Every single organization in America would love the secret to avoiding ransomware attacks. Right? Ransomware is rampant and growing across the United States, in every industry, and across every organization. No sector is spared at this point. 

When it comes to prevention, it’s essential to understand the starting point. Recent research has shown that ransomware attacks start from three main sources. Understanding the starting point for most ransomware attacks helps us better work to prevent them. 

If your organization is ready to prioritize preventative IT security, Clarity Technology Group provides comprehensive managed IT services to various businesses in size and scope. This blog will review the three ways most ransomware attacks start and the steps your organization can take to avoid a ransomware attack. 

3 Ways Ransomware Attacks Start 

#1- Exploiting remote services 

Over half of ransomware attacks start with hackers exploiting remote services. This refers to vulnerabilities in internet-facing applications, which are standard across enterprise environments worldwide. Often, organizations have internet-facing applications because they enable employees to work remotely, a trend that has grown immensely since the start of Covid-19. Microsoft Exchange, for example, a commonly used application across many industries, has been tied to several attacks. Google Drive and Trello are two other examples of commonly used internet-facing applications. 

#2- The organization has not applied security updates 

Even when security updates have been made available for different applications; many organizations remain vulnerable because they don’t apply them immediately. Lack of security updates is mainly exploited when a vulnerability is new. Cybercriminals often act as quickly as possible before an organization has had a chance to update or even be informed of the security update. This is one reason that working with a qualified managed IT service provider ensures your organization is taking advantage of these security updates in a timely manner.  

#3- Weak usernames and passwords  

According to researchers at SecureWorks, usernames and passwords were the entry point for 39% of incidents. There are multiple ways that usernames and passwords can be stolen, including phishing attacks, infecting users with information-stealing malware, or breach attacks on weak or common passwords.  

Avoid Ransomware Attacks With Managed IT Services 

Many common cybersecurity mistakes are entirely avoidable with the right preventative plan. Performing regular security updates, using strong passwords, discontinuing the use of shared passwords, and employing multi-factor authentication organization-wide are all ways to help prevent a ransomware attack. Many of the most frequent ways ransomware attacks start surround a lack of managed IT support.  

 At Clarity Technology Group, we support small to medium-sized businesses in the Greater Madison Area. Servicing a wide range of industries, our primary goal is preventive cybersecurity. To talk with a member of our team, schedule a free assessment here