- Ransomware, a malware variant that takes over your computer files and won't give them back until you pay a ransom, is making a stronger impact on HR and the business world today, according to SHRM.
- For example, Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles fell victim to ransomware hackers who demanded $17,000 to restore access to the hospital’s e-mail and electronic health records. It created quite a mess, as patients had to be moved to nearby facilities for a week and faxes were used to communicate, according to media reports.
- Experts told SHRM that ransom payments are likely to rise, especially in the workplace, as more cyber crooks successfully hack in and get paid.
SHRM reports that after the FBI last year recommended that companies hit with the malware infection simply pay off the cyber thieves, ransomware attacks rose quickly.
Apart from backing up save files to a different hard drive in a secure location, Robert Siciliano, CEO of ID Theft Security in Boston, told SHRM that companies should ensure their hardware and software is properly updated. That includes updating all anti-virus, anti-phishing and anti-spyware apps, and having a secure firewall.
Laura Jehl, a partner and co-leader of the Privacy and Data Security practice in the Washington, D.C., office of global law firm Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton, told SHRM that companies should add encryption and have a strong data breach plan in place.
Of course, proper employee training on computer use in general is a smart strategy as well.