15 May WannaCry Ransomware: Wake Up Call for macOS Management as Well
According to an ABC news article, the WannaCry ransomware has affected over 200,000 organizations, in over 150 countries; including “FedEx in the United States, railroads in Germany and Russia, factories and phone companies across Europe.”
Unfortunately, for those affected by WannaCry, “there are going to be some tough questions for those institutions which didn’t do enough to keep their networks secure.” BBC – WannaCry ransomware cyber-attacks slow but fears remain
Why the tough questions? As is often the case, the affected software vendor already released a patch closing the attack vulnerability. In this case, WannaCry is leveraging a vulnerability that Microsoft remedied in a patch in March of this year.
The tough questions, therefore, are going to be around the processes and procedures that should be in place to quickly and efficiently apply patches. Is sixty days sufficient time to test and apply patches to the machines in your organization?
If not, why?
And, maybe a tougher question might be–how do you transition from an operating system that no longer receives updates? While Microsoft went a step above and released a patch for vulnerable, yet unsupported operating systems, they didn’t have to.
Now, macOS was not affected in the WannaCry ransomware attack this time. However, it doesn’t mean that it won’t be in the next headlining exploit.
Now is the time to first, be thankful your Mac environment wasn’t affected, but secondly, to evaluate your processes and procedures for managing them.
I can’t tell you how many times I heard last week, at Ivanti’s Interchange, that “I only have a small subset of Macs, and I leave them largely unmanaged.”
It’s a bit surprising to me, to be honest, to see any computer go unmanaged; especially, when I ask who the Mac users are in the organization. At a minimum, the response from these IT individuals is that their marketing teams and their executives are running Macs.
Executives! And no management?
Whether your executives are using Macs or not, it is time to put a plan in place for Mac management. Even if you’re managing just a “handful of Macs.”
It doesn’t matter what tool you choose to do the management–Ivanti, LANRev, JAMF, FileWave, Munki, etc. are all good. It’s the process and procedures that are the most critical. Success for you, is ensuring your Macs are under management and that you have a process in place to keep them patched – for both the OS and the third party applications you run.
If you do use Ivanti Endpoint and Security Manager, and unsure on where to even start, I offer a full Apple Admin training course. This course is designed to help a traditional Windows admin become comfortable with Mac management using the Ivanti toolset they’re familiar with. If you’re already familiar with Mac management, then join and learn how to create and implement the best practices for patching Macs and applications, and much more, using Ivanti’s toolset.
Invest some time and money now. Get those Macs under management and potentially avert a nasty Mac ransomware attack that could be just around the corner.