The Secretary General of INTERPOL, Jürgen Stock, warned today in a statement that hospitals and medical organizations have become targets of cybercriminals seeking to “profit at the expense of sick patients.” In particular, INTERPOL issued a warning to organizations at the forefront of the global response to the COVID-19 outbreak at increased risk of ransomware attacks to extort payments.
There is a new ransomware Trojan on the loose that is reportedly capable of disabling industrial control systems. Security researchers at Otorio, a Tel Aviv-based cybersecurity company, report that the origin of the malware, dubbed Snake, is most likely Iran. The new ransomware has caused havoc in the past two weeks and led to a spike in the number of reported cases.
Ransomware is an old threat that has come roaring back with a new ferocity. This type of malware—which gets its name from the payment it demands after locking away victims’ files— has quickly become one of the top types of cyber attacks. More than half of companies surveyed in a recent Ponemon Institute poll said they have experienced a ransomware attack.
As the impact and severity of crypto ransomware threats and attacks has grown over the past 2½ years, Webroot has published many blogs and articles on how best to defend against these modern day extortionists. Webroot does not believe that businesses or consumers should have to choose between extortion and losing precious, irreplaceable data.
After sharp spikes in ransomware attacks in recent years, the total number of incidents is trending downward in 2018. But that’s not necessarily good news because these attacks also are becoming more targeted and potentially more dangerous.
Defending networks from attack is no easy task for IT professionals. Attacks range in capability and threat; and overreacting or implementing the wrong technology can be costly and make it easier for the bad guys.
Ultimately, treat this guide as a first step in designing your defense-in-depth strategy. IT professionals must truly understand the risk to the business and that IT security does not have ”magic” solutions. There isn’t a single technology that can prevent all the bad scenarios, despite what vendors say.
Ransomware is a top of mind threat for industries of all sizes, and is constantly being evolved and adapted by technically sophisticated and financially motivated attackers. To illustrate the importance of this issue in business terms, Aberdeen’s simple analysis quantifies how the faster, more scalable time-to-recover provided by a cloud-based backup and restore capability reduces the impact of ransomware by about 90%,
Breaking Down the Relentless Risk of Ransomware
Although ransomware has been a weapon in the cybercriminal’s arsenal since as early as 1989, it has more recently become a top of mind threat for organizations of all sizes in the wake of publicity that followed massive, worldwide ransomware attacks such as Petya (2016), WannaCry (2017), and NotPetya (2017).
It’s a nightmare scenario for any user or organization: in the middle of an ordinary day, your screen is taken over by an alert that your data has been encrypted and your computer’s essential functions have been locked down. You have two choices: pay a ransom — or accept that you’ll never see your data again, including any sensitive or regulated information they may contain (which, in turn, may well be leaked or sold to the highest bidder).
Over the last few years, ransomware has emerged as one of the most devastating and costly attacks in the hacker arsenal. Cyber thieves are increasingly using this form of attack to target individuals, corporate entities and public sector organizations alike by holding your system or files for ransom. Unlike other forms of cyber theft that often involve stolen financial or healthcare information, ransomware cuts out the middleman. In cases where an attacker steals health or financial documents, they must sell them on to third parties to make money. As far as ransomware is concerned, the money comes directly from the victim.