Over 70% of organizations suffered two or more ransomware attacks in the past 12 months
has become a popular means for cybercriminals to cash in on their activities. They use ransomware to encrypt companies' essential data and ask to pay a ransom in return. If companies have not backed up their information, they must dig into their pockets to get it back.
According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, 73% of organizations suffered two or more ransomware attacks in the past 12 months. The majority — 44% of ransomware infections entered through, links, and websites.
The numbers are based on the2022 Ransomware Trends Report , which features data from a January 2022 survey with 1,000 IT leaders from over 16 countries across APJ, EMEA, and the Americas. All respondents must have experienced at least one cyber attack in 2021.
In total, 35% of organizations experienced two ransomware attacks, nearly a quarter (24%) endured three, close to a fifth (9%) of companies had four, and 4% went through five. Meanwhile, 1% of organizations suffered six or more ransomware attacks in the past 12 months. The remaining 27% of organizations faced only one ransomware attack.
Besides phishing emails, links, and websites, other common entry points for ransomware were infected patches or software packages (41%),/spraying (35%), insider threats (32%), or "critical" vulnerabilities (26%). A total of 1% of companies could not identify the entry point for ransomware attacks.
Paying the ransom does not guarantee data recovery
Ransomware will continue to be used in cyberattacks as long as businesses are willing to pay up, and they still are. A whopping 76% of organizations affected by ransomware in the past twelve months went through with the ransom payment.
However, nearly one in four (24%) companies still could not recover their data afterward.
On the positive side, nearly a fifth (19%) of companies that got their IT systems infected with ransomware in the past twelve months were able to recover their data without paying the ransom. Meanwhile, 5% were not asked to pay in the first place.
To be able to pay the ransom, 72% of organizations relied on some form of insurance.
How to protect from ransomware attacks
Don't open suspicious links or attachments. Cybercriminals employ various social engineering methods to get unsuspecting victims to click on a malicious link or open a malware-ridden file in an email attachment. However, doing so may infect your device with malware. Therefore, it is important to closely inspect the links, emails, or other messages you receive and ensure they come from a trustworthy source before interacting with any of its contents.
Keep your software up to date. Regularly update the software you use. The updated software has the latest security patches, making it harder for cybercriminals to exploit vulnerabilities in your programs.
Back up your data. Keep your data backed up offline. This way, even if you experience a ransomware attack and get your data encrypted, you will not need to pay cybercriminals to get it back.