Australia’s ransomware toll highlighted by government attacks

Attacks compromise business continuity, then hit CISO confidence after recovery.

CSO  >  ransomware / security threat
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In a climate of sustained and damaging ransomware attacks, the threat of business interruption from ransomware continues to plague businesses and government agencies. And it’s not just internal systems under threat: Governments’ growing reliance on external cloud-based providers highlights the ongoing risk of compromise in other parts of the operational supply chain by ransomware and other cyberattacks.

Security firm Kaspersky has reported that Australia was the most-attacked ransomware target in the Asia-Pacific region in 2020, with more than 15 of the 61 ransomware compromises reported regionally.

Yet even as the data is recovered and operations restored, many ransomware-hit organisations are likely to suffer other consequences. According to one recent Sophos survey, for example, IT managers in ransomware-hit companies are three times more likely to admit that they feel ‘significantly behind’ in fighting cybersecurity threats.

Many were leaning on human cybersecurity capabilities as a result, with 43% of ransomware-hit companies saying they plan to implement human-led threat hunting within six months—a third higher than the proportion amongst companies that had not been hit by ransomware.

That survey also found that 35% of ransomware victims named recruiting and retaining skilled IT staff as their single biggest cybersecurity challenge—compared with just 19% amongst companies that have not suffered a ransomware strike.

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