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Imagine that moment when you turn on your computer and all you see is a message: “Oops, your files have been encrypted!”

The message goes on to say that you can recover all of your files safely and easily if you submit payment. The ransomware attackers even allow you to decrypt a few files for free by clicking the “Decrypt” button. This demonstrates that they have indeed taken control of your computer or network. Lastly, they provide instructions on how to pay them in Bitcoin to have the ransomware removed.

The first thing you do is ask someone else in the office if they’ve seen the same message. Then your heart sinks, and your phone starts to ring. Your heart sinks further as you arrive at the brutal realization that your company is frozen.

These types of attacks can and do happen. If either your network or computers are unsecured, all it takes is one click of a malicious URL in an email or a visit to a malicious website by an unsuspecting staff member or agent in your company to trigger a set of events into action that’s not only expensive, but also injures your brand and disrupts business continuity. The risk is real.

Perhaps the biggest trend this year in ransom attacks is a strategy shift. Rather than sending out millions of emails and collecting small payments of a few hundred dollars, ransom attacks have become more targeted, seeking tens of thousands of dollars in payment by disabling entire companies.

According to CoreLogic® industry security expert Matt Cohen, “brokers need to act today to keep their computers and installed software patched, install highly rated antivirus software, use their firewalls to stop the spread of ransomware, provide anti-phishing training for agents and employees, make sure their multi-generational backups are well-tested, and so much more.”

How CoreLogic Can Help
Contact Matt (@mcohenmn or macohen@corelogic.com) for a security assessment. In addition, develop a security policy and procedure document, deploy a strong authentication solution like the single sign-on solution from CoreLogic and train staff and agents regularly on best practices.

Troy Rech is senior leader, Sales at CoreLogic. For more information, please visit www.corelogic.com.

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