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WannaCry? Servers will make you.

Shawn Mims
May 17, 2017

WannaCry? You will after this so-named ransomware takes over your Windows computer, encrypts all your important files, and charges you $300 to decrypt them, if you’re lucky. This virus is sweeping the globe and making headlines because of its widespread impact. Before you read any further, make sure you have run the latest Windows update if you are using a version older than Windows 10.

Losing your family photos and personal files on a PC to ransomware is unfortunate. Losing the critical infrastructure that runs your business because you’re still using local servers is catastrophic. That’s right, these viruses are indiscriminate and business servers are not exempt from these attacks. Local servers are especially risky because they represent a single point of failure if they aren’t backed up. And how confident are you in your backup systems? Do me a quick favor and go unplug your servers. Are you 100% sure they are going to start up where they left off? If you’re at all hesitant, then ransomware is only one of a host of concerns that you should have:

Disgruntled employees – Is there any way for you to prevent an unhappy employee from stealing your data or wreaking havoc on your company’s servers?

Natural disaster – Fire, flood or tornado. Enough said.

Disk failure – Computers degrade over time and will eventually break down.

Failed updates – If you didn’t update your servers with the latest Windows patch, you are susceptible to WannaCry. On the other hand, every update has the potential to introduce compatibility issues.

Other viruses – WannaCry is just the latest example in a growing trend of PC and local server hacks. And, while it’s possible to recover your files from a ransomware attack, other viruses are less forgiving and will destroy files outright or render your machines completely useless.

How do you avoid these risks? Dump the servers and adopt cloud-based applications like ServiceTrade. Why are they less risky? Without going into detail about the advanced technology they use for security and backup, the easiest way to understand how they work is to compare them to banks. Is your money safer under your bed, or in the bank? If your home is robbed or burns down, you lose your money. If the bank is robbed or burns down, your savings are insured (backed up) and your checks and debit cards still work. It’s that simple.

Don’t keep your business data under the bed. Dump the servers and move to the cloud.

In case you’re curious how WannaCry works, here’s a video of it in action:

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