In 2021, ransomware became dinner table conversation. Not only were cybersecurity leaders focused on the ransomware pandemic, but also the general population learned the perils of ransomware. It’s a consistent breaking news headline and daily concern implicating small-to-medium businesses and large enterprises in industries far and wide, as well as consumers.
It’s led to plenty of conversations amongst governments, trying to figure out the best way to prevent attacks and prosecute those who are responsible. While those efforts are welcome, they will not be immediate. In other words, they won’t help your organization if you get attacked today.
Unfortunately, that day is coming. To delay it, highly advanced AI-powered security that protects your entire suite is needed.
Consider this: according to Check Point, more than 70% of malicious email attachments or links were sent via PDF or through Microsoft Office. All the files you interact with daily are vectors to start major attacks.
That’s why powerful security is needed. In today’s environment, the most critical thing is artificial intelligence (AI). Phishing training and awareness is nice and a good thing to do for proper cyber hygiene. In the same way that self-driving cars can augment an inattentive driver, individualized systems can perform all the same analysis that an intelligent human might perform after years of training, but do so repeatedly, patiently, and quickly for every single message.
As ransomware increases, mainly delivered via email, enterprises need to commit to improving their defenses. According to our research, 51% of advanced phishing threats require both Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to identify and stop.
Consider this fictional scenario. Your company just hired a new analyst, and their job is to read every email, as it comes, for every person in your organization. They must read it and determine, instantly, if the email is a phishing attempt or not.
That is an impossible task for a human, but not for AI. When implemented and used correctly, it’s like a superhuman. AI is integral for any good email security solution. But just saying you use AI and machine learning (ML) is not enough. What’s needed, instead, is AI that’s trained on the best data set. When your AI is trained on rich data from the most sophisticated attacks, the impact is noticeable. Good AI sees patterns in data missed by the human eye. This is then compiled and fed into the AI, which allows for detections of security events that no human can match. For example, it can lead to an over 99 percent drop in phishing emails reaching the inbox.
When you combine powerful AI with powerful malware-detecting tools, you’ll be in good shape for the ransomware war.
To protect your enterprise from these attacks, a full antivirus suite is needed. That includes sandboxing and anti-virus, as well as Content Disarm & Reconstruction. Files can be major weapons in the phishing and ransomware war. Receiving or forwarding a malicious file can wreak havoc on an organization. If your organization can’t defuse such items, you’re in trouble.
Having a solution that can detect and prevent ransomware embedded in those files is crucial. Here’s how it works. It instantly removes any executable content, good or bad. It inspects the file, cleans, and removes any risky active content, remakes the file so that it is threat-free, and does so instantly. This ensures that when the file is delivered, it’s clean. By doing so instantly, it doesn’t hamper productivity.
Further, beyond protecting email inboxes, protecting the entire cloud environment is crucial. That means protecting all places where business is done, including SharePoint, OneDrive, Slack and Teams. Just because you haven’t had a threat in these apps yet doesn’t mean they aren’t coming. Plus, not all these apps scan files and messages instantly. That means that there can be malicious payloads lurking there, just waiting to be clicked on.
Scanning every file and message for malware and ransomware is the best defense your organization has against this looming threat. By scanning the entire cloud environment — every message, every file, every application — for malware, you ensure that dangerous zero-day malware attacks never enter your ecosystem.
Ransomware is a scary proposition. It was bad in 2021 and it will get worse in 2022. Those organizations that take the steps outlined above to better protect themselves will be in good shape for the upcoming year.