Info-tech

Barracuda researchers highlight spike in ransomware attacks amidst Covid-19

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on August 28, 2020

Many cybercriminals are now combining the use of ransomware and data breaches to double the leverage over their victims in this way

These evolving and sophisticated attacks can cripple day-to-day operations, cause chaos, and result in financial losses

Barracuda Networks, the cloud-enabled security solutions provider, highlights the spike in ransomware attacks against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic and remote working scenario.

Barracuda researchers, in their study, identified and analysed 71 ransomware incidents wreaking havoc on government, healthcare, and education organisations.

The researchers said that although ransomware has been around for more than two decades, the threat has been growing rapidly in recent years. Cybercriminals use malicious software, delivered as an email attachment or link, to infect the network and lock email, data, and other critical files until a ransom is paid.

These evolving and sophisticated attacks are damaging and costly. They can cripple day-to-day operations, cause chaos, and result in financial losses from downtime, ransom payments, recovery costs, and other unbudgeted and unanticipated expenses, they added.

 

Researchers also informed that in addition to stealing data, encrypting files, and demanding ransom, cybercriminals are also demanding payment from victims to avoid publicly disclosing their information.

Many cybercriminals are now combining the use of ransomware and data breaches to double the leverage over their victims in this way.

Of the attacks studied, 41 per cent were a combined ransomware attack and data breach. If the ransom is not paid, victims’ data is dumped on the threat actors’ servers or auctioned off on the dark web.

Researchers noted there have been concerted attacks on the institutions of higher learning, personal information and medical records, and healthcare research. Logistics-related attacks are also on the rise.

Speaking on the threat spotlight, Murali Urs, Country Manager-India, Barracuda Networks, commented: “With the pandemic forcing millions of workers to switch to a completely remote working model in such a short space of time, it brought with it a myriad of security challenges for businesses.

“Cybercriminals have taken it as an opportunity to access a massive attack vector. The weak security of home networks makes it easier for them to compromise them, move laterally to business networks, and launch ransomware attacks. Foreseeing their innovative and adaptive nature, we at Barracuda Networks are delivering innovative security products that are easy to deploy and can ensure to safeguard companies and individuals against the attacks.”

Researchers also suggested that the 3-2-1 rule of back-up must be followed with three copies of files on two different media types with at least one offsite to avoid having back-ups affected by a ransomware attack.

Published on August 28, 2020

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

You May Also Like