Your small business gets hit with a ransomware attack, who can you trust? Certainly not the cyberattackers themselves when they cannot trust even each other. Ransomware group AlphaV has reportedly staged their own “FBI Takedown” of their site and services in order to not pay their cybercriminal partners the money owed to them from their latest cyberattack. AlphaV reportedly was paid $22 million in a recent ransomware attack and decided it’s best to skip paying out those who helped them. So if you can’t trust the cybercriminal you just wanted to pay, who can you trust?

Who you can trust

The FBI and many others in law enforcement have come out previously and stated to not pay the ransom if you fall victim. The FBI has said this specifically and provided some reasons behind this.

The FBI does not support paying a ransom in response to a ransomware attack. Paying a ransom doesn’t guarantee you or your organization will get any data back. It also encourages perpetrators to target more victims and offers an incentive for others to get involved in this type of illegal activity.

Were it so easy

As we know, in reality this isn’t always an easy decision to just not pay the ransom. When your small business isn’t able to operate because your systems are down can change things. When you are unable to make payments or create your products, things change quickly. A ransomware attack can cripple any sized business and organization, so it is never as simple as never pay the ransom.

Be prepared, minimize risk

Like all things cybersecurity, it is about being prepared and minimizing your risk of becoming a victim. This means having a solid cybersecurity foundation in place. This foundation should include properly backed up data, system alerts for malicious activity, and an incident response plan.

To pay or not to pay

The question of paying a ransom is unique to each individual business. It is a calculated risk if you pay it or if you choose not to pay it. It is your decision to make.

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