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Credit Unions Choose Isolation to Prevent Extortion through Ransomware



Credit unions, community banks, and global financial services firms have one thing in common – ransomware risk. We have seen a significant uptick in Menlo Security Isolation Platform (MSIP) deployments across the financial sector to address this risk and other threats. This week, our team is at the Credit Union National Association Technology Council Conference (#techopss2016, @CUNA) talking about how isolation can prevent ransomware. 

Urgency in Preventing Ransomware

For those of you unfamiliar with the term “ransomware,” it is a form of extortion using a particularly insidious type of malware. Your end users contract ransomware in the same way they contract other types of malware, primarily via the web and email. Ransomware restricts access to your company’s device or network data, primarily via encryption, until a ransom is paid to remove the restriction. 

What I hear from our current financial services customers is that several factors are driving their interest in using Menlo Security Isolation Platform to prevent ransomware:

  • Their colleagues have experienced ransomware and personally shared their war stories
  • The Ransomware threat is increasing, according to the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (U.S.-CERT), and the FBI
  • A ransomware attack made public is an unacceptable risk in this sector, since it can destroy an institution’s reputation with clients
  • Despite implementing multiple security solutions, firms are still experiencing attacks

How is Web Content Isolation Relevant to Credit Unions?

Isolation is a preventative cloud security approach that protects your employees from any chance of contracting ransomware, and other types of malware, as they visit and interact with web sites. 

Gartner positions Isolation as a key part of its Adaptive Security Model for threat prevention. They also cite Isolation as one of the Top 10 Technologies for Information Security in 2016 (cited as Remote Browsing). 

Isolation fits as part of a multi-layered security strategy, as this Webinar explains, and is rapid and effective for threat prevention, as this technology overview describes. Deploying isolation allows your institution’s employees to experience the same web functionality they need, but without facing ransomware or other malware risks. 

As our financial sector customers have told me, the Menlo Security approach is appealing because:

  • Isolation does not require any endpoint updates – it’s a cloud service
  • End users remain productive while security is greatly tightened
  • No appliances or boxes are required – even small credit unions with few staff can deploy it

They have also found that isolation solves security and management problems they face with their existing Secure Web Gateways, URL filtering and other security point products. I’ll describe those in more detail in my next blog.

Until then, we welcome your questions and inquiries, and if you found this blog helpful, share it!

Tags: ransomware, banking, financial services, @CUNA, #techopss2016, #creditunions

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