Ransomware best practices for mitigation and prevention.
Ransomware best practices for mitigation and prevention.

Carnegie Mellon's Software Engineering Institute released a set of Best Practices for ransomware prevention and response.

Researchers said that in addition to backing up files, educating employees, conducting regular data backups, restricting code execution, restricting administrative and system access, and maintaining and updating software were all key components to preparing and securing against potential threats are some of the most effective mitigation strategies, according to a May 31 blog post.

Most ransomware is delivered via malicious websites and via email. To prevent email attacks on a system level, companies are encouraged to beef up email security through robust filtering, blocking attachments, reviewing permission-related practices, and removing local administrative rights.

In the event of an attack, researchers recommend IT staff take a snapshot of their system, shut down their system, block network access to any identified command-and-control servers used by ransomware, and notify authorities.

Several factors ranging from the rise of Bitcoin to the evolution of ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) were cited as reasons for the uptick in ransomware and the current success rates suggests thieves have little incentive to slow down so IT teams should remain vigilant.