Category Archives: Ransomware

‘Not if but when’ – 2017 UK cyber security in focus

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2017 is Ascentor’s thirteenth year in information risk management. Over the years we’ve helped public and private sector organisations address the challenging landscape of cyber security and information assurance. Each year brings different threats – those we already recognise evolve, others are completely new. At the same time the legislative horizon changes as new standards and regulations come into force.

We started 2017 by quoting a tweet from John Chambers, CEO of Cisco, that is as good as any in describing the challenges of the year ahead. “There are two types of organisation: those that have been hacked & those that don’t know they’ve been hacked.” So, it’s increasingly a case of ‘not if but when’ – and a lot of household-name organisations know how painful that felt last year. Continue reading “‘Not if but when’ – 2017 UK cyber security in focus” »

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Ben Wheeler

Ascentor marketing and content editor.

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Cyber security in perspective – a look back at 2016

Year 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we reflect on 2016, there are two stand out events that dwarf every other piece of news this year – the decision of the UK to leave the EU and the election of one Donald J Trump.  Both put cyber security in the spotlight in 2016 for different reasons – from the confusing to the bizarre.

But it wasn’t just the changing political landscape that caught our eye. Many organisations were affected by ransomware attacks and one high profile business discovered just how costly the on-going fall-out from their data breach would turn out to be.

So, let’s look back at 2016 through the cyber security lens of Ascentor. Continue reading “Cyber security in perspective – a look back at 2016” »

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Ben Wheeler

Ascentor marketing and content editor.

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Ransomware and Large Enterprises – a defence-in-depth strategy

Ransomware antivirus immunization word cloud concept.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part 3 in a series of blogs on ransomware. Ransomware is on the rampage. Earlier in the year barely a week would go by without a report of a costly attack. Now it’s almost a daily news story with reports suggesting that the number of attacks increased by 30 per cent in August alone. Even worse, payment doesn’t necessarily come with any guarantees. A recent article from infosecurity magazine found that 1 in 5 UK organisations that paid during a ransomware attack didn’t get their data back.

In this climate, the question is how to have confidence that you are on top of the problem, with a good chance of prevention and a coherent strategy to recover from it without having to pay up. Continue reading “Ransomware and Large Enterprises – a defence-in-depth strategy” »

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Peter Curran

Principal IA Consultant at Ascentor

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Cyber Insurance – can you ever be fully covered?

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Whether it be from hackers, careless employees, malicious insiders or ransomware (pick your own threat list) – organisations are under increasing risk of cyber attack. And, wherever there is a risk – there’s the option of insurance.

Cyber insurance, also referred to as cyber risk insurance or cyber liability insurance coverage (CLIC), has been around for over a decade. Now, as cyber threats grow, cyber insurance looks set to join other business insurance policies in the risk management toolkit. But, can it really adequately compensate against the consequences of an attack? Continue reading “Cyber Insurance – can you ever be fully covered?” »

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Ben Wheeler

Ascentor marketing and content editor.

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Ransomware – Back up or Pay up – Top Tips for SMEs

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Part 2 in a series of blogs on ransomware. In the first blog we covered some basic cyber hygiene as well as providing 6 top tips for single home computer backups. This second blog takes it up a level and is aimed at Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

Ransomware is the installation you really don’t want – it’ll encrypt your files and you’ll be blackmailed in to paying a ransom for the recovery key. What’s more, it’s a fast growing menace. New data from Intel Security shows a 24 per cent increase in this kind of malware in the first quarter of 2016 alone.

By restricting the ability of systems to operate, ransomware has the capacity to cause long-term damage to the reputation and profitability of any business. However, due to their size, SMEs don’t always have the resources to counter the damage that an attack can cause. We hope that, by following these six tips, SMEs will be better prepared to prevent attacks or respond with confidence, should the worst happen. Continue reading “Ransomware – Back up or Pay up – Top Tips for SMEs” »

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Paddy Keating

Director and Government Service Manager at Ascentor

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Reflections on CyberUK in Practice – CESG’s government security conference

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Ascentor went to the ‘CyberUK in Practice’ event in Liverpool on the 24th and 25th May, organised by CESG. Bringing government, industry and the wider public sector together, the event addressed how we can collectively make the UK safer online.

Over 900 delegates attended, with 60 speakers from government and industry. There was no shortage of topics covered and new developments shared. Indeed, Alex Dewdney, Director of Cyber Security at GCHQ described the event as a ‘step change in how government does cyber security.’

So, with a little time to reflect on the event, we’ve summarised what we thought were the main cyber security discussion points for government and industry. Continue reading “Reflections on CyberUK in Practice – CESG’s government security conference” »

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Ben Wheeler

Ascentor marketing and content editor.

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Ransomware – Back up or Pay up – 6 tips for single computer backups

Symbol of internet security with binary character hand and padlock to represent ransomware

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part 1 in a series of blogs on ransomware. The number of ransomware attacks is on the increase with cyber criminals using this tactic in “alarming” numbers – according to security researchers quoted on BBC News.

Wikipedia defines ransomware as a type of malware that can be covertly installed on a computer without knowledge or intention of the user that restricts access to the infected computer system in some way, and demands that the user pay a ransom to the malware operators to remove the restriction.”

A conservative estimate is that about two thirds of all new malicious code releases include some form of ransomware. The tools are now easily available, the risks of being caught are comparatively small and the profits are huge. To top it all, the main defence is the human user and we all know how unreliable that can be.

The question is no longer how you prevent the infection, but what you have to do to recover from it without having to pay up. Continue reading “Ransomware – Back up or Pay up – 6 tips for single computer backups” »

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Paddy Keating

Director and Government Service Manager at Ascentor

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