BrightCloud’s 2022 threat report is out. The research confirms what you’ve likely been telling your clients all year—threats are complex and evolving quickly. And you never know what’s coming next. Like so much emerging research in the security space, it drives home the need for fully developed cyber resilience in organizations of all shapes and sizes.
Here’s a quick look at the two areas your clients worry about most—ransomware and phishing.
Ransomware payouts are becoming a lot more expensive.
Even before this report’s release, we’ve been discussing how chaotic and treacherous the ransomware space has become. Fewer companies have been paying ransoms, and not for the good reasons one might hope (read: the data resilience in place to tell the crooks to pound sand). Instead, bad-faith criminals are making it even harder to trust that paying up will result in system and data restoration.
On the other hand, when payouts do happen, they’re much more expensive than they used to be. The 2022 Brightcloud Threat Report found that the average ransomware payout in 2021 was $322,168—more than doubling year over year and nearly 48 times the average payout just three years earlier.
These macro trends add up to a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” dynamic for individual companies. Paying up is more expensive than it has ever been, and your recovery is anything but assured. And deciding not to pay means the total loss—or exposure—of your data. It’s far more economical, no matter how you slice it, to get your cyber resilience house in order so you’re not vulnerable to ransomware attacks.
Most ransomware attacks start with phishing, and cybercrooks have become adept at keeping us biting. Their latest tactics, according to the new threat report, include:
- Timing attacks and content strategically around calendared events. For example, strategic phishing attacks were launched during the holiday shopping season, at tax season, and during the U.S. elections.
- Adding CAPTCHAs to phishing sites to make them appear to be more legitimate.
- Securing phishing sites with SSL to exploit user trust in URLs displaying the padlock icon.
- Using URL shorteners like bit.ly and TinyURL and is.gd, which are widely used by organizations for legitimate purposes and unlikely to be blocked, to direct users to phishing URLs.
Ransomware and phishing are top of mind for your customers. But there are many threats on the rise, sometimes working in tandem with other threats and sometimes threats unto themselves, including high-risk URLs, malicious IPs, malware, insider threats and more.
This expanded universe of constantly emerging threats can only be dealt with through a holistic, resilience-based approach that can protect your company from known and unknown threats.