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March 23, 2017

Webinar - What You Need to Know About Ransomware

Ransomware is a large and growing problem that your business should be aware of and take steps to protect against. And Netwrix and TMC (News - Alert) are hosting a webinar on this very topic this morning. Here’s the link.

If you missed the live event, never fear, this event will be available on demand.

The online attacks known as ransomware not only take over a company’s assets – including computers and other networking infrastructure, and data – but it holds onto them until the organization agrees to pay a ransom to have them freed.

Developed in 1989 by Harvard biologist Joseph Popp, ransomware first surged in 2013. And it continues to be a growing problem, as these statistics illustrate.

  • There were more than 4,000 ransomware attacks daily in the first quarter of last year. That’s according to research and consulting firm Deloitte (News - Alert). This was a 300 percent increase from the ransomware attacks during the same period the prior year.
  • CryptoWall version 3.0 alone has cost victims $325 million.
  • Ransomware is the No.1 cyber threat for the financial industry.
  • More than 32 percent of financial firms have had ransomware attacks resulting in losses of $100,000 to $500,000.
  • An Osterman Research survey for Malwarebytes suggests that nearly two-fifths of businesses in Canada, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S. were the victims of ransomware attacks. Nearly half were due to employees clicking on bad email links, the survey indicates. And in two-fifths of the cases, data from more than one computer was encrypted.
  • A survey from Cato Networks indicates that 73 percent of CIOs, and 50 percent of those surveyed, said defending against emerging threats like ransomware is their top priority for 2017 across networking and security . 

“This points to both the increasing proliferation of ransomware attacks across both large and small enterprises as well as increasing industry awareness of the issue, spurred on by a number of recent, high-profile attacks,” said Cato Networks.

Ransomware attacks are growing more frequent due in large part to two trends: the increasing processing power of computers (which are now so powerful that they can encrypt their own files in a matter of hours) and the rise of anonymous payment systems such as Bitcoin (which make it easy for criminals to accept payment without fear of being traced), according to Intermedia (News - Alert).

Edited by Alicia Young