Sunday, February 26, 2017

The current state of security for the home/home office user.


I've been inspired to write this because of a current customer that had a ransomware problem. They had questions on how to stop it and could their files be recovered without paying the ransom. Well the answers are yes and no respectively.

I'm sure everyone has internet security, I'm sure most of you run Microsoft Windows. If that is the case. Your first way to prevent the ransomware malware is to make sure both your anti-virus and operating systems are up to date.

In addition if your running Windows XP please update or if your computer is that old that you can't update get a new one or a newer refurbished computer from your local computer store. Running Windows XP is the most insecure thing you can do. It won't matter what anti-virus you run you are still in danger. Like I heard on this IT podcast. Its like putting a great lock on an old beat up shed. You might stop someone from picking the lock but they can just simply kick the door down or bust out a window. If you are running Windows 7,8,8.1 or 10 you must make sure your operating system is up to date to make sure any security updates are in place. Microsoft always has some kind of update for the security of your device.

Secondly is your internet security. It doesn't matter what you run but it does matter if it is updated. Internet security that isn't updated is like not having it at all as it concerns the newer malware threats. The security software has to know about the threat in order to stop it. That is why regular updating is important. I've had times where I just happen to open my anti-virus program and hit update and it wasn't current. Now what if I got some newer malware and I didn't do that. I could get infected. Its always a good practice to check on your software regularly just as you check your car or check anything else you might own. Sometimes you might find a small issue before it becomes a big problem.

Lastly, the one thing everyone needs to do just in case is BACKUP BACKUP BACKUP. Use a usb drive, use a computer on your local network, use online backup. Something! Don't wait til disaster hits and say what if. Be proactive and be prepared


The number one factor in security lapses is the human user. I remember Kevin Mitnick's book The Art of Deception and how social engineering played a big part in his success as a hacker. The game hasn't changed one bit. Now its the major component in the majority of malware, the human factor. What's the solution. Education. We as users have to constantly learn in order to not become a victim. I hope this help someone or gives you the motivation learn more.