Do you have this dangerous backdoor for hackers?

by Kelly McNeil on November 10, 2017 in

An Important TechBldrs Cybersecurity Update

Many of us rely on older printers and scanners to help us at work and at home. But what would you do if trying to print family photos, a school paper, or an important work report meant giving hackers a chance to hijack your system and hold your files for ransom? Learn how to prevent this with one small step that will have a big impact on your cybersecurity protection.

We don’t think of printers and scanners as technology that need to be replaced as regularly as phones or laptops. They’re unwieldy to move, expensive to buy, and many of us think “well, if my current model still gets the job done, then why should I get a new one?” But hackers have found an exploit that allows them to enter a backdoor into your system so they can take your files hostage using ransomware), malware that locks your device until the hacker’s demands are met- and your older printer or scanner could be the way they do it.

How to protect yourself and your company:

There’s one easy security precaution that you can take right now that will defend you from a possible ransomware attack. Server Message Block version 1 (SMBv1) is a networking protocol that has a vulnerability that is exploitable by hackers. It’s this protocol that is used by older printers and scanners to connect to the computers they “talk” to. By disabling the SMBv1 protocol (which will not harm the functionality of your computer or network, but will affect the functionality of your older printer or scanner), you can stop hackers from using this dangerous way into your system.

To disable the SMBv1 protocol in Windows 10:

  • Open the Control Panel (you can find this by searching for ‘Control Panel’ in the search box to quickly find its shortcut)
  • Select ‘Programs’
  • Click ‘Turn Windows features on or off’
  • Clear the check box for SMB 1.0/CIFS File Sharing Support

After these actions, your Windows 10 computer will be safeguarded from malware that uses SMBv1 to gain access and your cybersecurity protection will be heightened. However, if your printer or scanner uses SMBv1, then your older device will no longer be able to connect to your computer and will have to be replaced unless you take advantage of the work-around TechBldrs has developed to bypass this issue.

While disabling the SMBv1 protocol is a helpful precaution in shielding you from cybersecurity dangers, there are other important steps you can take to keep you, your business, and your family safe from online threats that might irreparably harm your data and your devices. Discover more about these threats and what you can do to defend yourself by learning about how to create a hack-proof password, how backups and a disaster recovery plan could save your business, and how cybersecurity training can protect you and your employees.

Questions? Have a computer that runs another version of Windows? Want to make sure you’re fully safeguarded against ransomware and other dangerous types of malware? Contact TechBldrs at (610) 937-0900, email us at info@techbldrs.com, or visit us at our main site at www.techbldrs.site so we can start you on the road to total IT security.