Think a Hacker Can’t Shut Down Your Computer? Think Again

Nellie R. Ortiz

A tech-challenged prison can now obtain computer software that shuts down any business’ working system. Picture the influence – then take concrete methods to keep your details protected.

NEW YORK – On May well 6, 2021, Colonial Pipeline fell victim to a ransomware cyberattack, which took down the major gas pipeline in the state and led to gasoline shortages on the east coastline.

Then on May possibly 30, 2021, the greatest meat producer in the globe, JBS Meals, also grew to become a victim of ransomware, closing down plant operations in the U.S. for a few days.

According to a cybersecurity expert who responded to the cyberattack on Colonial Pipeline, hackers obtained entry to their systems by logging on by way of a Digital Personal Community (VPN) using a compromised password.

Equally assaults are examples of how main systems can be taken offline if the proper measures aren’t taken.

Cybersecurity qualified and Assistant Professor for the School of Computing at the College of Utah, Mu Zhang, said both of those corporations and person individuals have to have to acquire all the steps they can to protect against hacks like these.

“The attackers really have to have to initially uncover a vulnerability so they can get into a system,” explained Zhang.

To shut these openings, Zhang endorses:

  • Setting up the most recent security updates for your computer
  • Working with antivirus software and scanning for viruses typically
  • Shifting your passwords frequently
  • Working with two-component authentication
  • Not opening emails if you really don’t know who they’re from or opening attachments from an unidentified e mail handle

“It will be additional handy to also to keep an offline backup, which is not related to the web, so air-gapped,” stated Zhang.

The motive why an offline backup is significant far too is that ransomware hackers will commonly delete your on the internet backup, so they have the only copy. This indicates you can only get it back if you pay the ransom.

Zhang stated, “The sufferer should really find out a lesson from this attack. Check out to back up their details and keep it in a safer put to avert long term assaults.”

Ransomware attacks may possibly feel far more well-known proper now for the reason that, every time a large business pays the ransom to get again their data, hackers are additional inspired to do it once again.

“The genuine-globe incidents have demonstrated that they can make a genuine financial gain,” reported Zhang.

Ransomware hackers are inclined to go soon after big firms alternatively than men and women because which is where they’ll make the most money. This is why it is critical for staff members to take techniques to stop hackers from logging into workplace units making use of their facts.

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