Since the last few years, the incidents of cybercrime have increased quite massively. According to a report, most cybercriminals, these days, are using Cobalt Strike Testing Toolkit to launch the attacks. The same report also suggests that most ransomware assails depend on the Trojan virus. But how does it actually work?
Well, firstly, the commodity Trojan malware programs enter the computer and lower the efficiency of its security system. After that, the ransomware enters the PC and begins stealing crucial information, which, in turn, causes a massive loss for the organization. But, is there any way to stop these attacks and reduce the ever-emerging threat of ransomware?
We will be discussing everything about the ransomware along with the prevention methods here, in this write-up. So, make sure to go through it properly.
What is Ransomware and How Does It Work?
Ransomware, in short, is a type of malware, which encrypts the files of an individual or a system. Once the encryption procedure is done, the attacker will stipulate a ransom from the victim. Otherwise, he/she will not restore access to the data or system that they have hacked.
A ransomware program is usually deployed through a vector module. It helps them in accessing the internal storage of a system. The most common delivery procedure of the same is phishing spam. It generally masquerades as a trustable file or source on the email of the victim.
Once you download it, the file will take over your system and block a particular section. Some ransomware programs also come with an in-built social engineering module, which will trick you to provide administrative access to it.
However, if you want, then you can prevent the cyberattack from occurring by implementing PAM (privileged access management) on your system. It, in turn, will help you to track your privileged accounts or files and notify you about the anomalies right away.
The Highlights of the Dominance of Ransomware
The dominance of ransomware programs was largely prevalent in the year 2019. According to a report, the access management-based security measurements from different organizations detected more than 68,000 new ransomware. It also suggested that the variants of new ransomware grew by 46% in the same year.
So, here, we are going to discuss a little bit more about the highlights of the supremacy of ransomware in recent years.
- The Ascendancy of Cryptominers: In truth, the hype regarding crypto mining declined somewhat massively in 2019. However, that did not stop the Cryptominers from unleashing ransomware. As per a study, around 38% of organizations globally were affected by the Cryptominers. The prime reason behind such emergence is the high-reward, low-risk nature of these programs.
- The Number of Targeted Ransomware is on the Rise: During the first half of 2019, the city administrations of the USA were affected by targeted ransomware. And, since then, the number or application of the same has grown quite massively. As the hackers generally choose their targets pretty carefully, then programs tend to deal a lot of damage than the randomly-unleashed ransomware.
- Emergence in Cloud Attacks: A recent study has revealed that around 85% of organizations globally are using cloud-based services for their purpose. However, the security of the same has not been bolstered enough. Thus, many hackers, these days, are targeting the cloud storage of an organization with their promoted ransomware modules. The number of cloud attacks has increased massively in 2019 and is expected to grow even more in 2020.
- The Surge of Botnet Army: Aside from all these, the overall activity of the botnets are increasing as well. Around 28% of companies worldwide had to deal with them in the year 2019. In most cases, the cybercriminals used Emotet as the required malware program due to its spam distribution feature.
Key Trends regarding the Ransomware Attacks
In 2019, some trends of ransomware attacks became quite prevalent. Let’s take a look at them.
- The most ransomware-attacked regions in the world were – North America, the Middle East, and South Asia.
- The leakage of revenue through cyberattacks has been quite prominent in the year 2019 as well.
- The most attacked category among the different security aspects of the organizations were surveillance cameras. However, it can be averted through the usage of an identity and access management
- The prices of malware programs (especially those used in ransomware) have increased at a higher rate during the last half of 2019.
- A massive increase in reconnaissance attacks has also been recorded on critically-stabilized infrastructures.
- The outbound attacks from China in India increased in 2019 as well.
How to Protect Your Company from Ransomware Attacks?
So, as of now, you probably do have a clear idea about the massive damage that a ransomware program can cause. But how are you going to avert those? Is there any way that can help you to keep your organizational details safe? Here, you are going to know about five different methods to do it. Thus, make sure to check them out.
- Using a Proper Email Solution: In essence, email has always been one of the topmost attack vectors of ransomware programs. Hence, you should begin taking your protective measurements by using a robust email security solution. Make sure not to choose something that only offers product-based safety measures. Also, you would have to train your employees more about spotting the anomalies in the network and learn more about phishing issues.
- Enhancing Endpoint Detection: Aside from taking care of the email security, you will have to amplify the strength of your endpoint detection system as well. It, in turn, will help you to establish more network detection solutions that can alert you about the adversities. Besides, you can also implement a multi-factor authentication system on your infrastructure. It will aid you in accessing all the administrators and remote accounts of your organization.
- Implementing a Backup of Critical Data: Some hackers tend to modify the critical data of a corporation through ransomware programs. So, to avoid such a situation, you can keep a proper backup of all the available details of your company. For more convenience, you can keep both an online as well as an offline backup on your system. It, sequentially, will beneficial for you to recover your modified data and avoid paying to the cybercriminal.
- Employing a Strong Security Solution: When you are trying to save your organizational data from a ransomware program, using a strong security solution does make a lot of sense. However, only deploying it is not going to be enough for you. Aside from that, you would also have to use a vulnerability assessment tool for understanding the depth of the danger. In addition to this, you can also include UBA or User Behavior Analytics in your system. It will offer a real-time alert if any of your end-users derivate from the baseline activities. The usage of a whitelisting software program can be ideal in this aspect as well.
- Establishing Working Policies in a Proper Manner: Last yet not least, you will have to enforce some policies as well that can prevent underprivileged users from accessing CMD tools or PowerShell. It will hopefully make your data much less vulnerable to an outer source.
Due to technological advancements, the usage and deployment of ransomware are increasing quite massively. Thus, make sure to implement some proper policies, security solutions, and customer identity and access management system to avert the impending issues appropriately.
ARCON is a leading enterprise risk control solutions provider, specializing in risk-predictive technologies. ARCON | User Behaviour Analytics enables to monitor end-user activities in real time. ARCON | Privileged Access Management reinforces access control and mitigates data breach threats. ARCON | Secure Compliance Management is a vulnerability assessment tool.