Most Common Ransomware Attacks: Lessons for 2021

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Ransomware attacks represent a considerable risk nowadays. Practically, all industries can feel the adverse outcomes from hacker attacks every day. One of the reasons is due to the money the cybercriminals get from the issue. Other reasons vary from person to person and their interest in ransomware attacks.

Last year, people could see that attacks become more fierce and frequent. No wonder that both average users and big corporations mull over the choice of the best security software. And while ordinary users ask “is PC Matic any good here” to protect the home computer, let us see how the world managed the most impactful attacks in 2021 and which lessons users learned.

Ransomware in California

California, which is known for Silicon Valley, is, naturally, one of the most wanted hackers’ targets. Interestingly, the reports say that the state tallies at almost nineteen million cases of attacks since 2005. The most impressive examples include the incidents with Northern California’s Cache Creek Casino Resort, Newhall School, and the University of California.

The Casino Resort experienced a system’s failure; therefore, the owners had to shut it down until the case was solved. While the Newhall School representatives reported about the students’ hacked personal PCs, the online classes were put on hold. As for the University of California, the institution had to pay $1.14m for criminals.

Other Attacks in 2020

There is also one specific case that deserves your special attention. The case in hand is a hacking attack related to Garmin. The company deals with smart technologies like GPS gadgets and smartwatches for monitoring physical activities and daily exercising. The Garmin products’ point is that a user can share data, results, and personal records with several devices and services. This moment became a weak element and hacker’s target, though.

Back in July, Garmin’s authorities announced that the company finally recovered from ransomware and is ready to get back to its normal activities. The cause of the ransomware was the WastedLocker – the problem that happened earlier in 2020. It was first detected back in April, and since then, a few more companies were attacked.

The targeted WastedLocker ransomware appeared in one of Garmin’s offices in Taiwan. The attack froze the company’s activity for five days: the user’s data synchronization, websites, customer orders, and communication channels were undermined. The ransomware turns around data scrambling. Luckily, Garmin’s representatives reacted fast, and the problem was solved as soon as it was possible.

Ransomware Trends 2020

After a range of drastic cybercrimes, it is possible to outline several ransomware trends of 2020. Here are the outputs from the current year:

  • The price of the system’s unlocking presupposes significant sums. The IBM Security X-Force authorities report about the demands that increase by a considerable ratio. So far, the amount accounts for more than forty million dollars.
  • If talking about the ransomware attacks that happened more frequently than the others, it would be Sodinokibi attacks.
  • As COVID-19 favors vulnerable conditions of the schools and universities that moved from offline classes to virtual ones, cybercriminals tend to attack educational institutions more often.
  • Almost half of all the digital attacks of 2020 (41%) happened to the companies that utilize operational technology networks.

Lessons for 2020

Considering the most common ransomware attacks of the last twelve months and how the companies reacted to these, there are several lessons people need to remember. The takeaway number one is no one is assured of digital crimes; both industries and home computers are at risk.

The world has also witnessed the dramatic scope of ransomware that can halt the companies’ activities for a long time. As the example of Garmin shows, businesses require much time to get back the trust and effective operation. In this regard, there is an increasing necessity for both small and big enterprises to develop the internal cybersecurity guidelines.

And, finally, human error is always one of the most common reasons behind cyber attacks.

Thus, one should have essential protection and pay attention to anything suspicious happening on the computer or personal digital space. If the software provides an additional layer, the following simple rules when surfing the net can help avoid losing your sensitive data.

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