The first two decades of the 21st century have witnessed cloud computing rapidly gaining a foothold. It has been the buzzword among the tech savvy, though not without reason. Of late, there is another term from the same industry that is hitting headlines — ransomware, like we previously we discussed about WannaCrypt ransomware. Though, cloud computing is intended to make one’s life easy and IT infrastructure affordable, the malware and ransomware is becoming more and more of serious concern. Now, there arises basic interesting questions – Can Cloud Check Ransomware Attacks? Can cloud computing resolve the hardship caused by ransomware?
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Can Cloud Computing Resolve The Hardship Caused By Ransomware?
To figure out the answer, we need to carefully examine the characteristics of both and analyse whether there are any inherent aspects in cloud computing that can thwart the threat posed by ransomware. Ransomware is malicious software or malware developed so as to either publish private data or block access to it unless a ransom is paid.
The severity of the attack ranges from simple denial of access to thorough encryption of the files. They usually earns high revenue because most of the computer users have vital data stored on their systems which are not backed up regularly. Ransomware typically has 2 modes of propagation. Trojan disguises as either a legitimate file over email or as other media. It ultimately infects the system once the user downloads or opens it, or it propagates itself automatically over a network, typically via internet. The threat posed by the ransomware attacks can be negotiated only by regularly backing up data and installing security patches on time. Even though operating system providers constantly track malicious software and provide timely crucial updates, a novice user fails to understand its importance and ends up not updating his or her systems on time, resulting in infection. Cloud computing can scale down the extent of ransomware attacks if it can take care of data backups and regular system updates.
Cloud Computing is Combination of Technology
Cloud computing is the combination of technology and infrastructure that allows for centralised pooling of resources and delivery of computing services over the internet. It provides services like servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics and more, which are accessible universally. Here, the infrastructure is set up, maintained and managed by service providers. A typical user can utilize any or all of these services by paying a nominal fee based on the services availed. Based on the expertization of user, cloud computing usually provides 3 broad categories of services :
- Infrastructure as a service (IaaS),
- Platform as a service (PaaS) and
- Software as a service (SaaS),
All of which can be further customised, depending on service providers. Also, depending on the extend of usage, cloud technology can be deployed as a public, private or hybrid service. Cloud computing is safe, since when access to its resources are protected by multi-level authentication. Vendors often provide a dedicated data security surveillance team. Apart from this, cloud services automatically backup our data to eliminate the possibility of data loss by unforeseen incidents. Its other advantages include reduced capital expenditures, improved speed, scalability, improved productivity and reliability.
Again – Can Cloud Check Ransomware Attacks?
It is now clear that, by guaranteeing the safety and accessibility of our much-valued data at all times, cloud computing technology reduces the threat of access blockage by ransomware. Since the infrastructure is centrally located and maintained by a few service providers, it becomes much easier to update security patches on time. Even the internet security officers can better target the monitoring and effectively seek security compliance from these centralised locations. The strategies to defense, in combination against the malicious attacks are usually have many steps :
This thought drastically reduces the number of vulnerable systems over the internet and any possible loss of hard-earned money. This is because, when data is saved on cloud, even if a personal computer is attacked and has its data in the disk encrypted by ransomware, the user can format the computer and reuse it without worrying about losing any valuable data, hence eliminating the need to pay ransom to get the data unlocked. Thus, the sophisticated cloud computing and storage technology provides various features and advantage which can be exploited to effectively scale down the ransomware attacks.