According to recent articles, insurance companies around the world are concerned that ransomware-based cyberattacks are on the rise, and that they stand to lose more as hackers step up their efforts to demand bigger ransoms from their victims.
“Attacks are ramping up globally, so the number of South African organisations being impacted is increasing as a result,” Ignus de Villiers, Divisional Manager, Cybersecurity at Nexio shares in a ITWeb article. “The local cyber security readiness, maturity and posture of companies are contributing to more success and impact of attacks locally. While there are certain industries, such as our financial industry, that have similar or equal cyber security maturity to their counterparts in more developed countries around the world, our public entities and SMEs are generally more vulnerable due to a lack of skills and cyber security investment,” he further explains.
But what is ransomware? Ransomware is a type of malicious software, or malware, designed to deny access to a computer system or data until a ransom is paid. Ransomware typically spreads through phishing emails or by unknowingly visiting an infected website. Ransomware can be devastating to an individual or an organisation.
De Villiers adds that each threat needs specific defences to stop an attack from succeeding, so it’s no wonder organisations that don’t have dedicated security teams are feeling overwhelmed. Earlier this year a report by Verizon claimed that 61% of all ransomware attacks are on small to medium businesses with less than 1000 employees. These statistics are even more frightening because 1 out of every 5 malware attacks is a ransomware hit.
David McMurdo, Regional Director, South Africa, Veritas Technologies agrees with the facts and statistics on ransomware. “Kaspersky detected 16,017 new ransomware modifications in Q2 2019, more than double it discovered in the same period last year,” McMurdo enlightens Gadget, one of South Africa’s leading online magazines, readers. He believes that businesses need strong ransomware defence strategy that delivers protection at depth and at all levels. “You should have a strategy to proactively search for and fix system vulnerabilities, and deploy solutions for network monitoring, threat intelligence and endpoint detection. By covering all bases, you give potential attackers nowhere to hide,” he advises.
Click here to read the ITWeb article.
Click here to read the article on how to prepare for ransomware.