Australia government says ransomware is for businesses to address

But the opposition party claims that government must lead in helping the vast majority of small businesses who lack the cybersecurity resource and expertise.

An imprisoned mobile phone with encrypted data bears a radiation symbols as a warning sign.
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The Australian federal government has put the onus of fighting ransomware onto Australian businesses. It has released a report designed to raise awareness of the threat posed by ransomware and to educate businesses how to protect themselves against it—but with no specific government initiatives to tackle the ransomware problem.

It comes less than a month after the opposition Australian Labor Party (ALP) published a report calling for a national ransomware strategy.

The government’s report does not identify the specific costs of ransomware but says in the three months of April to June 2020 alone there was a 65% increase in cybersecurity incidents, at an estimated $7.6 billion cost to business for the financial year.

A recent global survey from cybersecurity company CrowdStrike found 67% of Australian firms had suffered a ransomware attack in the prior 12 months, a figure 10% above the global average. CrowdStrike also found the 33% of Australian victims were paying the ransom, or 6% above the global average.

Who is responsible? Government or businesses themselves?

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