Does your auto dealership have a comprehensive security system that protects everything from your websites to your employees’ mobile devices? Are your password policies and guest WiFi access guidelines designed to protect your systems fully?
It’s very likely the answer to at least one of those questions is “no.” For many Calgary Auto Mall companies, computer systems security is deficient. Fortunately, there are simple steps your company can take with an experienced IT services provider to reduce the exposure and risk to your business.
Recently, GM issued rigorous guidelines that cover the full range of dealership technologies. From operating systems and software to firewalls and password protection, the guidelines reinforce the need to develop a robust security strategy to cover a range of cyber threats.
One of the most insidious cyber attacks is ransomware, which can cripple businesses quickly and are costly to remedy.
What Is Ransomware?
Ransomware is a malicious software program that can find its way into a computer system through various means. It can be inserted when a hacker penetrates system security or gets an unwitting employee to open an attachment that embeds the software. Once the software is in your network and activated, the damage is severe. Frequently, the sites and systems are held hostage until the affected company pays, usually in cryptocurrency, to release affected technology.
Hackers use ransomware as a form of cyber blackmail. And they’re targeting Canadian small- and medium-sized businesses. One recent report indicated that Canadian companies accounted for 3 percent of all ransomware attacks worldwide in the first half of 2017.
What Happens If I’m Attacked By Ransomware?
When your system is attacked by ransomware, it can manifest itself in different ways. In each case, it usually locks you out of your technology, unable to access files or the system itself. Computers become useless and websites and data are encrypted, with threats and demands for payment. The most common types of ransomware include:
What Are Auto Dealerships Doing About Ransomware?
GM has taken the lead by providing dealership guidelines that cover all aspects of computer security. The automaker recommends minimum and optimal levels of security in multiple categories. The optimal levels recommended to protect against malware include:
These comprehensive guidelines are just one portion of the technological requirements GM is imposing. It remains to be seen if other automakers will follow suit.
How Do I Know If My Computers Are Protected?
Calgary auto dealerships can ensure that their systems are protected against ransomware by partnering with a trusted IT service provider. Rafiki Technologies offers assessment and consulting services that determine the level of protections already in place. We then recommend and deploy stronger solutions that prevent ransomware and other crippling attacks.
Rafiki understands the complexities that auto dealerships face with technology that needs to serve multiple departments, locations and groups. We help many other dealerships with technology solutions that are scalable, reduce costs and dramatically improve performance. To learn more about our security and other IT services, contact us today.
Practice management software, intraoral cameras, digital x-ray, patient education system. With our approach to IT project delivery, we help keep budgets in line with projected costs.