April 16, 2024

A ransomware assault can deliver your whole group to a halt. Many state-sponsored and financially motivated risk actors typically goal e-mail servers, equivalent to Microsoft Alternate, to steal or encrypt confidential enterprise knowledge and delicate info, equivalent to PII, for ransom.

Lately, FIN7—a extremely lively infamous ransomware group—was discovered concentrating on weak Alternate Server organizations based mostly on the their measurement, income, variety of workers, and many others. They used an auto-attack system known as Checkmarks and leveraged the SQL injection vulnerabilities to infiltrate the organizations’ community and steal or encrypt confidential enterprise knowledge.

On this article, we’ve shared 5 methods that may provide help to to enhance your Alternate Server safety and defend your enterprise from such cyberattacks.

High 5 Methods to Enhance Alternate Server Safety

Ransomware Comic Cloudtweaks

Following are the highest 5 methods to guard your Alternate group from varied threats and guarantee enterprise continuity.

1. Set up Alternate Server Updates

Putting in updates is without doubt one of the most crucial features of securing your Alternate group or e-mail servers from varied on-line threats and ransomware assaults. By putting in the newest Alternate updates (as and once they arrive), you may patch the vulnerabilities and safe your group from malicious assaults. It will provide help to repair bugs and shut any open doorways that hackers might exploit to achieve entry to your group’s community or knowledge. Apart from the Alternate Server, you need to additionally replace the Home windows Server OS and different software program as quickly as attainable.

2. Use an Alternate-Conscious Safety Software program

Malicious packages or virus intrusion can infect your Alternate e-mail server and the messaging system. They could enter the system or community by way of unsolicited, spam emails, or focused and complicated phishing assaults.

Whereas Alternate Servers have built-in anti-spam safety to filter spam or phishing emails and a Home windows Defender instrument with anti-virus/malware safety, chances are you’ll contemplate putting in further third social gathering Alternate-aware safety software program in your server. It will provide help to proactively scan and filter phishing or spam emails which will comprise malicious hyperlinks or attachments.

3. Inform and Educate Customers

Your workers or customers are the primary line of protection. Each worker in your group with e-mail entry is a goal for attackers. Thus, it may very well be your strongest or weakest level in the case of securing the group’s community from on-line threats or knowledge theft.

Give you cybersecurity insurance policies and consciousness coaching packages for workers. Make these obligatory and part of the annual assessment. You could implement these insurance policies and set guidelines for web shopping, social networks, emails, and cellular units. Additionally, take away entry to your community for any worker that leaves the group instantly.

By educating and coaching your workforce on cyber safety assaults and their influence on the group, you may successfully cope with the threats and forestall malicious assaults to a big extent.

4. Allow Multi-factor Authentication

Utilizing a weak or identical password at your work that has been used a number of instances on different web sites or social media channels poses a critical risk to the group’s safety. Such passwords could be simply cracked with brute power or might leak if the web site is breached.

To make sure customers within the group don’t use weak passwords, implement a password coverage. The coverage ought to power customers in your group to create complicated passwords containing a mix of letters (uppercase + lowercase), numbers, and particular characters. It ought to stop customers from utilizing a beforehand used password. Additional, the password also needs to be modified after 30-45 days.

As well as, allow multi-factor authentication (MFA) by way of one-time password (OTP) or authenticator apps for licensed entry. MFA assist prevents unauthorized entry to person accounts and mailboxes in Alternate Server even when the password is leaked in a breach or stolen by way of a phishing assault.

5. Allow RBAC for Entry Management

Use the Position-Based mostly Entry Management (RBAC) permission mannequin out there within the Microsoft Alternate Server to grant permissions to directors and customers. Based mostly on their duties or duties, you need to use the RBAC to grant the required permissions or roles briefly and revoke them as soon as the job or activity is finished. As well as, it’s additionally vital to audit the entry management to maintain a examine on person accounts with administrator or elevated privileges.

To study extra, discuss with the Microsoft documentation on the Role Based Access Control.

Closing Ideas

Sustaining enterprise continuity within the period of rising ransomware assaults is a problem. Although Microsoft often releases safety updates with hotfixes to patch Alternate Server vulnerabilities, you need to take further measures to additional strengthen the server safety. Step one is to acknowledge cyberattacks as they aren’t going away and embrace them in your enterprise continuity plan. Along with the 5 methods we mentioned, you must keep a daily verified backup. Comply with the 3-2-1 backup rule and use Home windows Server Backup or any third-party Alternate-aware backup utility to create VSS-based backups.

You also needs to hold an Exchange recovery software, equivalent to Stellar Restore for Alternate, because it is useful when the backups aren’t out there, out of date, or fails to revive the information. The software program will help restore person mailboxes and different knowledge from compromised or failed Alternate servers and broken or corrupt database (.edb) recordsdata to PST. You may as well export the recovered mailboxes and knowledge to Workplace 365 or one other dwell Alternate Server immediately and guarantee enterprise continuity.

By Gary Bernstein