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Ransomware Is No Different Than Other Cyber Security Attacks

Ransomware is no different than other cyber security attacks and organizations need to be proactive at staying vigilant to protect from hackers.

Organizations are at risk of not keeping up with cyber security measures because of ransomware attacks.  Businesses which make adjustments to their cyber security and IT environments will be much better protected against regular cyberattacks from hackers and cyber criminals.

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Ransomware is no different than other cyber security attacks and businesses should stop thinking ransomware is somehow unique to other threats to their business. Hackers and cyber criminals playbooks do not change much with time as there are many targets out there.  They take actions such as gaining access, increasing privileges, and stealing or destroying information. I think it would be great if they were to establish persistent access at the same time. The best hacking methods always win.

A ransomware attack is simply the ‘steal or destroy’ stage of the cyberattack in which a hacker runs a program to encrypt a victim’s data.  Next step is the same as a regular cyberattack, whether the aim is to start a ransomware campaign, spy on an organization quietly, or use the compromised system as a steppingstone to another network for a larger pay out.

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Most business leaders believe that hacking relies on secret programs and knowledge only known to a few shadowy hackers and cyber-criminal groups.

Even though this is bad news for defenders, the hackers approach is typically straightforward and predictable. Detection and protection methods used by cyber security vendors against ransomware are generally tried and trusted because they are successful.

The true problem arises when a sufficiently motivated cyber-attacker can circumvent the systems cyber security protections, policies, and procedures. The result is an arms race in which the vendors of security products develop products to block attackers, who then learn how to progress, which then propels the vendors to adapt. It is a constant cycle.

By challenging their own security environment, businesses can also help proactively prevent attacks.

Healthcare

  • Since 2009, healthcare industry reported over 2,100 data breaches. (Tech Jury)
  • Only 6 percent of healthcare organizations budget cybersecurity measures. (Fierce Healthcare)
  • Since 2020, 50 percent of ransomware attacks were healthcare data breaches. (Health and Human Services)
  • Average cost of $408 per record has cost healthcare for data breaches. (HIPAA Journal)
  • Since 2016, ransomware attacks against healthcare providers have caused over $157 million in losses. (HIPAA Journal)

Education 

  • Universities saw an increase of 100 percent increase in ransomware attacks between 2019 and 2020. (BlueVoyant)
  • Higher education saw a payout of $447,000 on average from a cyber-attack. (BlueVoyant)
  • Approximately 84 percent of higher education facilities have been affected by ransomware attacks. (Emsisoft)
  • Over 66 percent of universities lack basic email security configurations. (BlueVoyant)
  • Approximately 38 percent of universities have unsecured or open database ports. (BlueVoyant)

Finance & Insurance

  • Approximately 62 percent of all records leaked in 2019 were from financial institutions. (Bitglass)
  • Over 204,000 people experienced a login attempt to access their financial information. (Hub Security)
  • Approximately 90 percent of financial institutions have been targeted by ransomware attacks. (PR Distribution)
  • In 2020, 70 percent of the cyberattacks went after financial institutions. (Hub Security)

Government 

  • In 2020, 33 percent of cyberattacks on governmental bodies were ransomware (Security Intelligence)
  • In June 2019, a city in Florida paid a $600,000 ransom to recover hacked files. (CBS News)
  • Around 38 percent of local and state government employees are trained in ransomware attack prevention. (IBM)
  • A ransomware cyberattacks against a Southern city in 2020 cost over $7 million. (SC Magazine)

In lieu of focusing on a cyber security issue such as ransomware, organizations should ensure their own IT environments are secured effectively to prevent any type of cyberattack.

365 iT SOLUTIONS  is federally certified by the Canadian federal government under the CyberSecure Canada program.

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