A message from Colten Gines, Manager, Customer Support
This is a test, this is only a test… Your server has crashed and we need your backup before you can continue business! Where would you look? Who would you call? How long would it take?
Ransomware and malware attacks are increasing in frequency and in the number of computers affected. There have already been three high-profile cases this month, and as in most cases, the recovery plan that was put in place was more complicated than expected. Backups were missing or not happening at all.
First, if you are using our QCloud hosting service, your data is already being backed up nightly! If you’re not on QCloud, call us to discuss why it’s such a great option, or read on and make plans to protect your data.
Principles of a Good Backup System
- Set it up. Don’t put it off any longer.
- Backups should occur automatically. If you plug in a flash drive or portable hard drive, that’s better than not backing up at all, but there is a high probability that it will not be done regularly.
- Your backup system should be configured to store many days of data. You don’t want it to just overwrite the previous day’s data every day.
- Your data should be backed up to an off-site location. In addition to malware, there are physical risks that can cause you to lose your data such as lightning strikes, theft, fire, flood, etc.
- You should regularly audit your backup system to make sure it is still functioning, and that the backup location has recent data, and that that data is readable.
Setting Up Your Backup System
- Go to www.qfloors.com and login.
- Click in the Support Search bar and type in automated backup.
- Click on the document for backing up QFloors Small Business or Basic, or QFloors High Performance.
- Work with your network tech to follow the instructions.
Tips to Help Prevent Ransomware, Malware, Viruses, etc.
This is a tricky one since new threats are being created more frequently than you might think. Cybersecurity company, McAfee Labs, tweeted in December 2016 that it found four new threats per second. These threats are becoming more and more difficult to prevent entirely, but you can do some simple things to decrease your chances of infection. Kind of like washing your hands frequently and covering your mouth when you sneeze or cough!
- Make sure your computers, operating systems, software, apps, systems, etc. are up to date. Updates “patch” the vulnerabilities that allow the threats to work in the first place, so keeping things up to date will significantly decrease your chances of infection.
- Educate your employees about what NOT to click on in an email. Since email is one of the most commonly used methods of introducing malware, and one of the most successful, make sure everyone knows the danger signs. Security awareness training firm, KnowBe4, has a detailed graphic that you might use shown here.
- Involve your network tech regularly to do things like audit your backup system, check your network firewall to be sure it is blocking known malicious websites, update outdated network devices, and check the security of in-house devices such as smart TV's, etc.
- Use strong, unique passwords. A strong password has a combination of upper- and lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols in it, where those letters, numbers, and symbols are not easily converted into normal words (for example, don’t use the number 3 in place of an E). Using unique passwords means DO NOT use the same password to login to various websites, software programs, etc. Use a password manager app/software such as SafeInCloud to store passwords and create strong passwords. You might even do some research in using "two-factor authentication" (or 2FA) for logging into some web accounts (banks, social media, etc), but don't use a 2FA tool that sends login codes by text message - that's the least secure method (apps such as Authy are more secure).
Thank you for listening to us preach about this again. There are plenty of scare tactic articles and blogs out these days, and we don’t mean to add to it, but we have had customers call recently because their QFloors programs stopped working and it was due to ransomware and other malware.