The Impact of Ransomware: 5 Major Effects of Malicious Software

Ransomware, malicious software that attacks users' systems, can be a major threat to businesses and can have wide-ranging, long-lasting, and devastating effects. Educating yourself on what ransomware is and how to prevent it is important in today's world and we covered those topics in previous blogs. Just as important is understanding the impact ransomware can have on your business and operations. In this blog, we will examine five major effects ransomware can have.

Data Loss

Among the greatest impact of a ransomware attack is the loss of data. In recent years, it has become apparent that hackers will steal any type of information which has value and that no data is safe. Whether it is financial, health, proprietary, or other sensitive information, losing this data is one of a company's worst fears. Ransomware can prevent access to company data temporarily or permanently, depending on the type and severity of the attack. The malware leaves companies paralyzed and unable to perform its normal duties or obligations.

Interruption of Company Operations

Given the loss of data that comes with ransomware, a company is left with little to do until the security breach is resolved. Company operations often come to a grinding halt as a result of ransomware. Operations might cease out of necessity if the attack has crippled a company's system, or out of an abundance of caution as the company tries to prevent the attack from spreading to other systems. In either scenario, ransomware acutely impacts a company's operations. In the most severe cases, ransomware shuts down businesses entirely.

Productivity Loss

While a company is working to resolve a ransomware attack, its employees may not be able to perform their everyday duties. With system access suspended, the only work that can be done is that outside of the company's system. Though some employees will be able to carry on with some tasks, those who require access to online systems for daily responsibilities may be at a standstill until the attack is over.

Additionally, those employees who deal directly with clients will need to explain to clients why there is a slowdown or halt in service, activities, etc.

Financial Loss

The loss of data and employee productivity contributes to another loss on the bottom line. A company attacked by ransomware takes a major financial hit while it is unable to carry on with business as usual. Revenue is not being generated, but employees are still being paid their salary and benefits. Businesses are not able to operate under these opposing ideas for very long before needing to wave the white flag.

Reputation Damage

Once news of the malware infiltration reaches the outside world, the company has already reached crisis mode. Clients who have trusted a business that has been breached may quickly lose trust in that company's ability to handle sensitive information in the future. This can lead to client loss and makes retention more challenging.

During a ransomware attack, businesses are hard at work on system and data recovery while the outside world is watching. When faced with the pressures of resolving a ransomware attack and returning to business as usual, companies often reach out to technology experts so that operations are restored as quickly as possible. Managed services providers (MSPs) have the knowledge and dedicated expertise need to assist small- and mid-sized businesses with their technology needs.

With services like customized email filtering, network security, and other data security solutions, AJTC stands ready to partner with your company to mitigate and prevent data breaches from happening and damaging your business. For more information, call 708.942.8200 or contact us here.

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