Skip to main content

Ransomware payments hit a new all-time high last year

 

As ransomware attacks hit more businesses than ever before in 2021, so too did the number of businesses that paid cybercriminals to unlock their data.

According to a new report from Palo Alto Networks' Unit 42, ransomware payments reached a new high last year driven by the fact that cybercriminals began using Dark Web “leak sites” to put additional pressure on victims to pay up.

Based on cases worked by incident responders from Unit 42 last year, the average ransom demand rose by 144 percent to reach $2.2m while the average payment climbed by 78 percent to $540k.

The industries hit hardest by ransomware attacks last year include professional and legal services, construction, wholesale and retail, healthcare and manufacturing.

Cyber extortion

Of the ransomware groups in operation last year, Conti was responsible for the most activity and it accounted for more than one in five of the cases worked by Unit 42's consultants.

REvil or Sodinokibi (which has since been shut down Russia's FSB) took the second spot at 7.1 percent followed by Hello Kitty and Phobos at 4.8 percent each. In addition to being responsible for the most attacks, the Conti ransomware group posted the names of 511 organizations on its Dark Web leak site which was more than any other group.

Palo Alto Network's report also goes into more details on how the cyber extortion ecosystem grew last year with the emergence of 35 new ransomware gangs. At the same time, ransomware groups invested their profits into the creation of easy-to-use tools and increasingly leveraged zero-day vulnerabilities.

Leak sites played a big role in getting organizations to pay ransom demands and the number of victims whose data was posted on such sites rose by 85 percent last year to reach 2,566 organizations. When it came to the location of leak site victims, 60 percent were in the Americas, 31 percent were in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and nine percent were in the Asia-Pacific region.

While ransomware groups continue to plague organizations around the world, law enforcement authorities and even tech giants like Microsoft have stepped up to try and disrupt their operations.



Source: TechRadar

Popular posts from this blog

Yandex spins out self-driving car unit from its Uber JV, invests $150M into newco

Self-driving cars are still many years away from becoming a ubiquitous reality, but today one of the bigger efforts to build and develop them is taking a significant step out as part of its strategy to be at the forefront for when they do. Yandex — the publicly-traded Russian tech giant that started as a search engine but has expanded into a number of other, related areas (similar to US counterpart Google) — today announced that it is spinning out its self-driving car unit from MLU BV — a ride-hailing and food delivery joint venture it operates in partnership with Uber. The move comes amid reports that Yandex and Uber were eyeing up an IPO for MLU  last year. At the time, the JV was estimated to be valued at around $7.7 billion. It’s not clear how those plans will have been impacted in recent months, with COVID-19 putting huge pressure on ride-hailing and food-delivery businesses globally, and IPOs generally down compared to a year ago. In that context, spinning out the unit could

Slack’s new integration deal with AWS could also be about tweaking Microsoft

Slack and Amazon announced a big integration late yesterday afternoon. As part of the deal, Slack will use Amazon Chime for its call feature, while reiterating its commitment to use AWS as its preferred cloud provider to run its infrastructure. At the same time, AWS has agreed to use Slack for internal communications. Make no mistake, this is a big deal as the SaaS communications tool increases its ties with AWS, but this agreement could also be about slighting Microsoft and its rival Teams product by making a deal with a cloud rival. In the past Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield has had choice words for Microsoft saying the Redmond technology giant sees his company as an “existential threat.” Whether that’s true or not — Teams is but one piece of a huge technology company — it’s impossible not to look at the deal in this context. Aligning more deeply with AWS sends a message to Microsoft, whose Azure infrastructure services compete with AWS. Butterfield didn’t say that of course

Xbox One S vs. Xbox One X: Which should you buy?

http://bit.ly/2v1agl5 We live and breathe tech, and also gaming, with every member of Windows Central rocking either an Xbox One console or PC gaming rig. We've compared and contrasted every iteration of Xbox One to bring you this guide. Xbox One X Raw 4K power From $299 at Amazon Pros Has thousands of games 4K media apps, Blu-ray discs, and games IR blaster for TV controls, Amazon Echo for voice controls Improved HDD speeds for faster loading times Cons More expensive at around $500 RRP Requires a 4K TV to get the most out of it The Xbox One X is the world's most powerful games console, running the latest games with the crispest, detailed visuals on TV sets with 4K HDR support. Xbox One S More affordable From $226 at Amazon Pros Has thousands of games 4K media apps and Blu-ray IR blaster for TV controls, Amazon Echo for voice controls More affordable at around $300 RRP Cons No 4K games Games run worse, even on a 1080p TV The Xbox One S i

Elon Musk sends yet another notice trying to terminate the Twitter deal

Kristen Radtke / The Verge; Getty Images Elon Musk has sent a third letter to Twitter attempting to terminate his $44 billion acquisition of the company . Musk’s legal team cited Twitter’s multimillion dollar severance payment to former security chief and whistleblower Peiter Zatko as a violation of the merger agreement and a reason to end the deal. The letter, dated September 9th, was sent to Twitter’s chief legal officer Vijaya Gadde, and was included in a filing Twitter made with the SEC on Friday (which you can read at the bottom of this article). Last month, Zatko made headlines by accusing Twitter of misleading investors about the number of bots on the service, failing to delete users’ data, and having poor security practices, among other things. Musk jumped on the accusations, citing them in his second termination letter and subpoenaing Zatko to testify in the lawsuit. Zatko was set to be deposed on Friday. Elon Musk sent his first letter of termination in July , say