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The Hidden (and Devastating) Costs Of Being Hacked


Most business owners worry at least occasionally about being the victims of a hacker. However, many don’t take even the most basic steps to protect themselves against cyber criminals.

In our experience, this disparity between their anxiety and the amount of effort they put into protecting themselves from the unknown has a couple of causes. The first is that a lot of business people simply don’t know what it takes to keep their data protected. They aren’t even sure where to start. And secondly, they tend to heavily underestimate the costs of being hacked.

The average business owner understands that there are going to be expenses associated with being hacked. Namely, they expect to pay for repairs to computers and websites. Those charges can be quite extensive, but they actually represent the easiest and cheapest part of the problem.

If your small business is successfully targeted by hackers, you also have to look out for a pair of hidden (and often devastating) costs you might not expect. Let’s take a quick look at each one…

 

The Loss of Productivity for You and Your Team

Once a hacker gets into your computers or website, your business will essentially grind to a halt. You may not be able to sell products, accept payments, or even contact customers or vendors through email.

At the same time, employees will probably be sitting around waiting for an IT team to come and make needed repairs or replacements. They’ll be on the clock and getting paid, but not generating any new revenue. Meanwhile, your customers may seek out alternative products or services from your competitors when you aren’t able to give them what they need.

This loss of productivity and revenue is likely to amount to a lot more than what you’ll pay a technology team to sort out the problem. And yet, it’s still not likely to add up to the other significant costs you will have to bear.

 

The Damage Done to Your Credibility and Reputation

Once your business has been hacked, you could have a hard time winning back the trust of your customers. If your website and communications have been down they’ll think of you as unreliable. If they received phony messages from your company, or if hackers gained access to information like passwords and financial details then buyers might not ever forgive you.

Having your reputation diminished in this way, and losing the trust of your most important customers, can represent a permanent shift your company. In many cases, it can actually put a small firm out of business altogether.

 

Protecting Your Business is Easier and Less Expensive Than You Think

It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to protect your small business from hackers and online thieves. Working with a good IT partner, you can take advantage of stronger passwords, security software, firewalls, and automatic data backups to prevent criminals from breaking into your company… and to mitigate the damage if they do happen to get access to your files.

Instead of worrying about the future, why not contact the Kinetik IT team today so we can get to work safeguarding your devices and important data? It only takes a moment to schedule an initial consultation and you could be amazed at what it will do for your peace of mind.

Immediate Steps To Take In The Event Of A Ransomware Attack


Over the last few years we have seen a number of high-profile ransomware attacks that have affected small businesses, large corporations, and even institutions like hospitals and universities. With each successful infection, hackers have gotten bolder and business owners have found more reason to worry.

In recent posts we have outlined steps you can take to prevent yourself from being an easy target for online criminals. But, what happens if your worst fears come to life and you are affected by ransomware? Today, we want to lay out a few simple steps you should follow if you ever find yourself in that unfortunate situation…

 

Disconnect the Affected Machine from Your Network

The first thing you should do, if you see a ransomware message on your computer, is to disconnect the affected machine from your network. Physically unplug it if needed. Many forms of ransomware can spread across intranets and wireless networks, and the last thing you need is for the malware to get copied onto new devices.

If it isn’t possible to disconnect the device, or if you are already seeing signs that it has spread, turn off your router or server altogether.

 

Cover Up Any Webcams or Microphones

Some ransomware infections will copy files from the host computer and send them back to hackers. In other cases, criminals may listen in through webcams or microphones on infected computers. These types of attacks are rare, but they aren’t unheard of.

You don’t want them to be able to view or hear you, or to get more sensitive information from your company. So, disconnecting or covering things like webcams is a good idea.

 

Ignore Any Ransom Demands

Hackers want you to think that the easiest way to deal with a ransomware attack is to simply pay a fee and have access to your files restored. However, that’s not usually a good idea. For one thing, you don’t have any assurances you’ll get full access to your computers back. And for another, it only encourages hackers to develop more ransomware and target you again in the future.

Tempting as it might be to look for a quick fix, don’t make the mistake of giving in to ransomware demands.

 

Call Your Small Business IT Vendor Immediately

In many cases a good IT provider can remove malware from a computer quickly. They can also help protect you against further attacks by installing the right software and offering training to your team. If removal isn’t a possibility, they may be able to restore affected devices or workstations using existing backups, but that’s only an option if you had ongoing support in place to begin with.

No matter how you look at it, the best way to deal with a ransomware attack after it’s happened is to call an IT team you can trust and let them get to work.

 

The Best Cure for Ransomware is Better Protection

It goes without saying that the best way to deal with ransomware – along with other forms of hacking and cyber crime – is to not be a victim in the first place. If you feel like your networks, email, and data aren’t as safe as they could be, this is the perfect opportunity to get the help you need.

Contact the technical experts at Kinetik IT in Phoenix today to see how easy it is to get the protection and tech support your business needs!

How to Keep Hackers Away: A Step-by-Step Guide


In recent years, many of our clients have become more concerned about hackers and cyber crimes. They aren’t alone. Surveys show that U.S. companies lose billions to digital crime every year, and the number of companies affected – including Fortune 500 corporations, small businesses, and even government agencies – grows by the month.

However, that doesn’t mean you are powerless to prevent criminals from breaking into your website, servers, or computer files. In fact, there are a number of concrete steps you can take starting today to keep hackers away from your business. Let’s take a look at a handful of simple but effective protective measures you can put into place…

 

Invest in Staff Training

The weakest link in your cyber security plan probably isn’t a specific piece of hardware or software; it’s the bad habits you and your team might have. Firms like ours offer ongoing tech security training that teaches simple best practices you can use to close the door on hackers and make it harder for them to break it.

 

Take Password Policies Seriously

As we have written the past, strong passwords that are regularly changed can be a very effective first line of defense against computer criminals. It’s easy to rely on simple passwords, or use the same ones again and again, but this is an area where a little bit of planning and precaution can go a long way.

 

Put Firewalls and Security Software in Place

These are the digital equivalent of having strong locks and windows on your office. They might not prevent every hack, break in, or malware attempt, but you are far less likely to be targeted if you have basic security measures then you would be without them.

 

Avoid Suspicious Emails and Websites

When you or your employees visit untrustworthy websites, or open attachments from emails you don’t recognize, hackers are practically being invited into your business. This is a boring piece of advice but one that still holds up: don’t visit suspicious websites on work computers, and scrutinize every flash drive, file, or email attachment that comes your way.

 

Control Access to Your Office and Technology

Hackers don’t always get into your company through digital means. Sometimes they make their way into your office posing as service workers, job applicants, or even interns. Pay attention to the faces you see coming in and out of your company, and make sure that not just anyone (even your employees) can get access to important passwords or software applications.

 

Run Regular Updates and Backups

Hackers often look for businesses that are running outdated versions of existing software because they will have known security issues. That’s why you should always be updating your applications so you have the latest and strongest protections. Additionally, by running regular backups you can keep extra sets of your files that will be helpful in the event your company is hacked.

 

Keep an Eye on Your Accounts and Analytics

It’s bad enough to be hacked; it’s even worse if the online break-in goes undetected for days or weeks at a time. By regularly scanning your accounts and computer analytics you can be on the lookout for a regular activity that could be the first sign of a crime.

 

Rely on Your 24/7 Helpdesk

If all of this seems like a lot of work, remember that a good managed services vendor will set up these protections – and many more – on your behalf. Additionally, they’ll configure and monitor a 24/7 helpdesk and oversight system so you can be sure someone will always be looking out for your data security.

 

Is it Time for a Smarter IT Strategy?

Whether you’re looking to protect sensitive data, reduce technology expenditures, or just do away with nagging problems that slow your team’s productivity Kinetik IT can help. Our firm is one of the most trusted in Phoenix and beyond because we put our clients first. Contact us today to see how we can help your business develop a smarter tech strategy.

How Managed IT Can Transform Your Company Almost Overnight


For business owners who haven’t yet made the switch, the move from traditional IT to a managed services agreement can seem like little more than a billing change. When you get the right package from the right company, though, it’s nothing less than a way to transform your entire company.

To understand why, the first thing you need is a grasp on what managed IT actually looks like. It’s a system in which you pay for monthly technology care rather than getting an invoice every time you need a service call. That’s not just a difference of rates, it’s an entirely separate philosophy. With managed IT care you're no longer on your own – you have a team of professionals working proactively to ensure you don’t have any tech problems. That’s a lot better than simply calling an outside company to come and repair issues as needed.

Let’s look at a few of the ways managed IT can transform your business almost overnight…

 

You No Longer Suffer from Nagging IT Problems

One big problem with traditional IT is that every technology problem leads to a question: is this important enough to call a technician for help?

That’s not the way a business owner should be thinking about their hardware and software. They should be demanding that everything works well and isn’t causing delays or interruptions. With a managed IT agreement in place, you have someone working proactively to resolve nagging issues so they don’t slow your business down.

 

You Have 24/7 Monitoring and Support

If you don’t have continuous IT coverage then it’s essentially up to you to detect any technology problems you might be dealing with, even if they revolve around things you might not completely understand like hardware installation or cyber security.

Contrast that with the care you get from a good managed services agreement. Under that kind of system you have the security of round-the-clock remote systems monitoring and access to a 24/7 helpdesk so you can always get the answers and support you need.

 

You Can Make Better Technology Plans and IT Budgeting Forecasts

An underappreciated aspect of managed IT is that you get regular consulting sessions where tech experts can help you to understand how you can use technology like new apps and mobile devices to reach your business goals. Additionally, you’ll get personalized advice on investments and tech budgeting.

If you've ever had the feeling that you don’t know whether you're spending enough on IT or using the right devices and software, this is something you’ll definitely appreciate.

 

Technology Becomes a Competitive Strength

Far too many business owners think of tech as something they have to have but don’t really understand and wish they didn’t have to pay for. With a managed IT plan in place, you can use hardware and software more efficiently than your competitors, turning it into a point of strength for your small business.

Entrepreneurs need every edge they can get, particularly in the digital age. Why not give yourself a head start over your colleagues?

 

Want to Know More about Managed IT Care?

At Kinetik IT in Phoenix we work hard to help our clients succeed. So, if you want a tech strategy that focuses on your bottom line rather than the latest gadgets or buzzwords, contact us today to set up a meeting and see what we can do for you and your team.

4 Simple Rules for Safeguarding Your Passwords


Passwords are your first and simplest line of defense against criminals who want to use technology to steal from you and your business. With a good password strategy in place, you have the equivalent of an office building with bolted doors and locked windows. Without the right password policies, virtually anyone can stroll in and have a look around.

To help ensure you're following the best practices for passwords on your business and personal devices, here are five simple rules you should follow…

 

#1 Choose Complex and Passwords

Most hackers aren’t computer geniuses. Instead, they are using simple pieces of software that either look for known software exploits or try to “guess” passwords by attempting thousands of combinations per second.

These applications can figure out a simple password in a matter of moments. However, a tougher password containing 10 or more characters, capital letters, numbers, and special symbols could keep the software busy for months or more. That’s enough time to detect the attack, and far too long for a hacker to spend on your website.

 

#2 Create Unique Passwords for Each Website, Account, or Application

Generating passwords that are long and complex is perhaps the most important step you can take, but even a strong password shouldn’t be shared between accounts. In other words, you should have one password for your bank, another for your hosting company, a separate one for each email you maintain, and so on.

By keeping different passwords you eliminate the possibility that someone will crack or otherwise obtain one of your login credentials and use it elsewhere.

 

#3 Don’t Keep Your Passwords in a Place Where They’ll be Seen

Having strong and unique passwords won’t do you much good if someone can simply walk into your office and see them on a printed sheet that's hung on the wall. Likewise, they can’t offer you much in the way of protection if you give them out to anyone who asks for them.

Keep your passwords stored in a secure place, like a safe or encrypted file. And, never share them – even with employees or vendors – unless you are convinced it’s safe to do so. When in doubt, ask an extra question, or check someone’s credentials, just so you can be sure.

 

#4 Change Your Passwords Regularly

It would be nice if you only had to worry about keeping passwords safe on your end, but it’s a sad fact that your vendors and partners (even Fortune 500 firms) can be hacked. As a result, your password might be compromised even if you aren’t aware of it.

The best way to deal with that threat is to change your passwords at regular intervals even if you don’t think it’s necessary. For instance, you might spend a few minutes on a Saturday morning every three months generating new ones and saving them to your accounts.

 

Looking for More Common Sense Tech Advice?

Kinetik IT has become a trusted resource for business owners throughout Arizona because we look for simple, workable, and cost-effective solutions for our clients. If you want better data security, 24/7 helpdesk support, and a smarter approach to tech spending and deployment, contact us today to learn more!

4 Things You Need to Know About Ransomware

Different IT professionals might not agree about everything, but we all hate ransomware. We hope you’re not too familiar with this particular type of malicious software, but you have probably heard about it or seen in on the news. It usually involves computers and workstations being locked behind encryption until a payment is made to an anonymous third-party. Hence the “ransom” part of the name.

While everyone but hackers hates ransomware, it’s clear that the trend isn’t going away anytime soon. Already in 2018 we’ve seen the SamSam attack affect thousands of organizations, including hospitals and governmental agencies.

Should you worry about something similar happening to you? How can you prevent your company from being held hostage for tens of thousands of dollars? Can you even prevent these attacks at all?

To help you get the answers you need, let’s look at four things you need to know about ransomware…

 

#1 The Best Cure for Ransomware is to Avoid It

This might seem obvious, but it’s important to mention. The best way to deal with a ransomware attack is to not endure one in the first place. Often, businesses are affected through suspicious attachments, unknown downloads, or employee visits to unsafe websites.

With a little bit of training and the right virus protection tools in place you can cut out the most significant risks. This will also help protect you from phishing scams, data breaches, and the other kinds of IT-related headaches that keep you up at night.

 

#2 It’s Not a Great Idea to Pay the Ransom

Assuming you are affected by ransomware, it's generally not that wise to pay the requested fee (which hackers will typically want in untraceable crypto currencies). After all, if you give up money now, what’s to stop a criminal for asking for more later? They already know you’ll pay.

Also, paying a ransom for access to your files just papers over the problems instead of putting better longer-term solutions in place.

 

#3 A Good IT Team Can Sometimes Beat Ransomware Easily

There are a lot of factors that determine how severe a ransomware infection is. These include the specific software being used, the number of devices affected, etc. It’s easy to understand why some targets (including the hospital we already mentioned) choose to spend money rather than wait for a fix.

However, if you have a good IT team working on your side they may be able to brush off a ransomware attack by using standard virus removal techniques or restoring an old backup. These are simple and cost-effective steps that might resolve the problem very quickly.

 

#4 Ransomware Infections Can Be a Sign of Bigger Problems

As a rule of thumb, having a ransomware infection suggests – at the very least – that a review of training procedures and web security software is in order. As we mentioned, these types of issues normally don’t come out of nowhere. Instead, they usually suggest an organization isn’t paying enough attention.

No matter what the outcome, it’s important to learn from a ransomware attack and come through the process a little bit stronger and wiser. Otherwise, the damage could be even worse the next time around.

 

Is Your Business or Organization Properly Protected From Ransomware?

If you worry that your company or agency doesn’t have the right kinds of data protection and cybersecurity tools and procedures in place then don’t wait for something bad to happen. Call the experts at Kinetik IT in Phoenix today so we can assess your technology and start taking steps to keep you covered.

9 Things You Might Not Have Known About Custom Software Development


How much do you know about custom software development? Or a better question might be: how much do you care about custom software development?

In truth, most business owners and executives don’t give it a lot of thought… until they learn that specialized programming can help them to automate data entry, streamline order processing and fulfillment, customize marketing, assist with scheduling, and help with dozens of other tasks that are critical to any company. In other words, having someone program an app specifically for your company can make or save you huge amounts of money.

Of course, that’s the one thing you really need to know about custom software development. Once you get past the basic reason why businesses invest in programming, though, there are a lot of other little things to consider. That’s because they can help you focus your thinking and get your project off the ground.

Today, we want to share with you nine things you might not have known about custom software development but probably should…

 

#1 Custom Programming is More Common Than You Think

Custom programming isn’t just for huge companies, or firms with big technical resources. In fact, we have worked on software builds and tweaks for very small enterprises and brand-new upstarts.

You don’t have to have huge budgets to benefit from software development. In fact, the smaller and more specific your company is, the easier it is to separate yourself from the competition with the right app or resource. So, if you haven’t thought about custom programming in the past because you imagined it was too complex or intensive for your operations, think again. No matter where you look, businesses like yours are using apps to accomplish more and spend less.

 

#2 It Doesn’t Have to Cost a Fortune

Not only can custom software development save you tons of time and money every week by making it easier for you to run your company, but it probably costs a lot less than you might imagine.

New clients are routinely surprised at how affordable it is to work with a team of experienced programmers. Unless your vision is extraordinarily complex, there isn’t any reason you have to break the bank to bring it to life. The same goes for scheduling. You probably won’t be waiting nearly as long as you would imagine to get finished software you can use.

 

#3 You Don’t Have to Start an App or Program from Scratch

In some cases, it makes sense to start from scratch when building a new piece of software. Very often, though, we can tweak an existing application, create a plug-in that piggybacks off another piece of software, or work from a template that’s already been created.

The benefits of working from existing software are that it speeds the process up, costs less money, and gives you a conceptual head start. It also restricts your imagination a little bit, but if you aren’t looking to reinvent the wheel – and just want to make it turn a little bit faster – know that your goal is probably well within reach.

 

#4 Software Development Can be a Productivity Booster

As we’ve already mentioned, there are dozens or hundreds of potential uses for custom software development. However, automating repetitive work tends to be one of the most impactful ways to use a new app or program.

If you have a part of your business that currently takes more hours than it should, or regularly produces costly and time-consuming errors, then a new custom app might be just what you need. The more time you can spend actually running your company (and having your employees handle the most important aspects of their jobs), the higher your productivity is going to go.

 

#5 There are Three Important Parts to Software Development

When business people think of “custom software development,” they usually imagine coders knocking out line after line until a piece of software is finished. In reality, there are really three important steps that have to be followed.

First, you and your creative team get together to discuss the concept. Then, they’ll create flowcharts and mockups of the interface so you can get a visual sense of the way your program will look and feel. And then finally, after that wireframe or static has been approved, they’ll start actually putting the pieces of code together.

Beware any programming team that only emphasizes aesthetics, for example, or functionality. Each of these steps is critically important, and you can’t afford to rush through any of them.

 

#6 It’s Important for Your Software to be Tested

Even the smallest pieces of custom software need to be tested extensively. This doesn’t take a lot of time, but it’s something you want to be sure is being handled.

There are couple of reasons for this. Naturally, you’ll want to ensure your app or program works the way it’s supposed to. At the same time, custom software should work well across any platform (for instance, desktop computers versus smartphones) it’s made to function on. And finally, you have to be sure your software doesn’t contain any security flaws that could leave it vulnerable to hackers.

This is an area where a lot of newer and inexpensive firms will cut corners. However, your business and credibility are on the line, so make sure testing is a priority.

 

#7 Your App or Program Might Change During Development

No matter how crystal-clear your vision of your finished program is, there is a chance that your idea might need to be changed or tweaked along the way.

When this happens, it’s usually because the client realizes a key feature is missing, or they discover users might like some functionality during beta testing. However, it’s also possible that your ideas will be amended because your original concept isn’t quite feasible, or could work more cleanly with a twist.

The more flexible you are during the software development process, the more likely you are to end up with something you and your customers or employees can actually use.

 

#8 Most Custom Software Needs Updates

Even the best pieces of custom software are never really “finished,” they just have to be released eventually. You should approach the launch of your app with the idea that it may need to be upgraded or revised later.

One reason for an upgrade or improvement traces back to the notion that you might decide to add new features. And, it’s possible your customers or users will ask for something more than what you give them initially. Even if those things don’t happen, though, you might need to eventually update your software to match changes to the operating systems it runs on.

A good custom software development team is going to prepare you for this eventuality early in the process and factor it into their quote. Once again, you should take it as a red flag if your programmer doesn’t bring up future updates and revisions with you.

 

#9 The Right Programming Team Can Make or Break Your Project

As you might imagine, choosing the right vendor is critically important to the success of your software development project.

An experienced team can guide you through each step and decision that comes up along the way; a bargain-basement vendor might simply take a feature list from you and then deliver work that meets the specs but doesn’t really fit the vision you had in mind. Then, you might be left with the dilemma of spending more time and money to get it right or using software that doesn’t really do the job you intended.

Experience, technical expertise, and reputation should be important guiding principles as you develop your app, so don’t sacrifice them to save a few dollars in your IT development budget.

 

Want to Learn More about Custom Software Development?

Do you have an idea for an app or program that could help your company grow? Or, do you simply want to learn a little bit more and figure out whether it’s something your business could profit from?

In either case, your next step is clear. Talk to the custom software development experts at Kinetik IT today. We have served businesses, nonprofits, and institutions across Arizona for years, helping them to find, imagine, and build the resources they need.

In one brief consultation, we can help you to think about software programming in a new way. Better yet, we'll give you the answers you need to tweak your idea or move it forward. Contact us now to get started!

What NOT to do When Facing a Malware Attack


Malware can take many forms. What they all have in common, though, is that they can turn into a big concern for your business very quickly.

Some pieces of malicious software take over your computers or workstations until you give up ransom payments to developers. Others can flood your business – including your employees and customers – with endless spam and pop-up ads. Perhaps the worst form of malware are the little bits of code that spy on your communications, looking for things like account numbers and financial transactions so thieves can get access to that information later.

Because the threat of malware is changing and evolving all the time, lots of business owners and executives aren’t really sure what they should do to guard against the threat. Even worse, most have no idea how to respond to a malware attack once it happens.

It’s easy to make things worse by doing something you shouldn’t. So, today we’re going to share a handful of tips you can use in the event you know or suspect you have malicious software on your computers or devices. We hope you are never in that situation, but if you are, here’s what you definitely shouldn’t do…

 

Don’t Ignore the Risk of Malware

When it comes to malware, a lot of professionals seem to take the “it could never happen to me” approach. That might be comforting, but it isn’t sound business strategy. You don’t have to run an enormous company to have hackers target your business. Many online thieves commit quick and easy crimes of opportunity. If your company’s hardware or software seems easy to get into, they’ll come looking for you.

It’s hard to find firm statistics, but it’s thought that malware affects thousands of small and medium-sized businesses throughout Arizona each year, costing them tens of millions in theft, missing revenue, and lost productivity. Typically, it’s the businesses that think they have the least to lose that are hit the hardest.

Know that the risk is real, and pay attention to warning signs like error messages, suspicious emails, and slow technology performance that seems to come out of nowhere. If any of these seems to be a problem, make a phone call and find out whether you need help from a professional IT team.

 

Don’t Panic About Your Malware Attack

If it turns out you do have malware on company computers or equipment, don’t panic. Sometimes, business owners or managers will decide to deal with the issue by formatting hard drives or replacing specific devices. Buying new tech can get expensive, and you don’t want to overreact and wipe out all your files at once.

You may not know what the scope of the problem is. That’s not great news, but it’s not a terrible position to be in, either. Things might not be as bad as they seem, and you don’t want to make them worse by taking drastic steps that won't solve the issue.

Sometimes the quick fixes business owners turn to in order to resolve malware are worse than the original infections themselves. Don’t turn a small repair into a big one by formatting something you shouldn’t, downloading software you don’t understand, or turning to a solution that seems too good to be true.

 

Don’t Ignore the Issue and Hope it Will Resolve Itself

Just as you don’t want to go too far, neither do you want to ignore malware if it has infected your computers or devices. Ignoring the problem won’t make it go away, and seemingly small issues can get progressively worse with inattention.

For example, some small pieces of spyware can download malicious code in the background if you don’t get rid of them right away. Or, you could end up spreading malware from one computer, workstation, or device to another if you aren’t diligent about getting rid of the problem. The point here is that the issue won’t solve itself, so don’t bury your head in the sand and hope for the best.

Having malware removed usually isn’t expensive or time-consuming, but it isn’t something that can be put off indefinitely, either.

 

Don’t Keep Infected Devices Online

Digital viruses resemble their biological counterparts in an important way – both stay alive through constant spreading and infection. So, if you don’t deal with malware quickly, there’s a chance it will move from one device on your network to another.

The best way to stop this from happening is by simply taking affected workstations, tablets, etc., offline if you can. Better yet, turn them off completely (unplugging cords if necessary) until they can be inspected by an IT professional. Leave them sitting where they are and you could make the problem worse, even if you aren’t actively doing anything with the affected hardware.

If you can’t take affected hardware offline, consider shutting down your network until the problem is solved. The problem will be fixed quicker if fewer devices have malware, and there will be less chance of hackers stealing information from you.

 

Don’t Make Any Payments or Money Transfers

In the last couple of years, lots of individuals – and more than a few very large organizations – have made big payments to hackers who are holding their files ransom. This is almost always the wrong course of action.

Even if the amounts demanded by the producers of a piece of malware are small, there are a couple of problems with the payoff approach. One is that you have identified yourself as a target for future exploitation. The other is that you are rewarding the hacker, thereby encouraging them to develop even more malicious code in the future.

Of course, there is also the chance that your financial information will be shared or stolen. So, take our advice and call an IT team if you are infected by malware, rather than paying a ransom you'll regret later.

 

Don’t Forget to Monitor Website, Email, and Financial Activity

In many cases, malware can be removed from many infected devices in a short period of time. Afterwards, you’ll want your IT team keeping an eye on your website, email, and other technology. Additionally, you’ll want to watch your own financial transactions to ensure nothing seems out of place.

There are two reasons you need to take this step. One has to do with unknown consequences. If you aren’t sure when your computers were infected with malware, then you can’t be certain what kind of information hackers already have. Also, this kind of activity check can help you be sure that all the malicious code was taken away and your business is back to normal operations.

In the same way your doctor wants to know you're well after giving you medicine, your IT team will likely want to keep an eye on your computers and email activity following a malware attack.

 

DO Call the IT Experts to Protect Your Business and Customers

As we’ve already mentioned, it’s a lot easier to deal with a malware attack that doesn’t happen, than it is to fix the damage after the fact. Unfortunately, most business owners and executives simply don’t have the time or expertise to identify suspicious activity, much less prevent it.

For that reason, your best bet is almost always to have an experienced team of technical experts working on your behalf. That’s exactly what we have at Kinetik IT in Phoenix. Contact us for a free consultation and you might be very surprised at just how easy and affordable it is to get the help you need.

Whether you’re dealing with performance and security issues stemming from a malware attack, or suspect you might not be as safe as you could be, now is the time to act. Get in touch with our team today so we can get your technology running perfectly again!