Ransomware Report: Sky-High Ransom Payouts 2021

Nowadays, ransomware attacks may occur in all spheres of our lives. Starting as sporadic cybercrime, ransomware turned into a multi-billion business. This blog post gets you to know with sky-high ransom payouts 2021 brought to us. It's only summer, but pessimistic expectations for the year have already been beaten. And we can only guess how much the companies that don't want to reveal cyber attacks on them virtually pay. Let's see some of the recent ransom demands and payouts.

Sky-High Ransom Payouts 2021

January 2021: 30-million REvil Attack on Dairy Farm

Dairy Farm Group is a huge pan-Asian retail giant. REvil ransomware attackers demanded a 30-million ransom payout. The company reported that they hadn't paid and fully investigated the case. However, there are still many issues to solve or answer in this case.

March 2021: Acer and $50 Million Ransom Demand, CNA and $40+ Million

Acer, a well-known computer manufacturer, paid an unprecedented sum of $50 million to REvil hackers group.

CNA Financial is one of the US’s largest insurance companies. Not confirming the ransomware attack officially in March, the company acknowledged the cyber attack in a few months. Reportedly, they paid $40+ million to regain control of their network.

May 2021: $4.4 Million Ransom Payout from Colonial Pipeline and Brenntag

Colonial Pipeline, US largest pipeline system, and Brenntag SE, a German chemical distributor, were attacked by the same hackers - the DarkSide gang. After receiving payouts, DarkSide appeared to get a pyrrhic victory as their network was seized and crypto accounts were drained. However, the payout sum and the very fact of agreeing to pay did much harm to future ransomware victims' prospects.

Summer 2021: Frequency and Severity Rise

In the summer, there are no companies suffering from ransomware attacks as much as previous months' 'record breakers.’ Still, the cyber security world reports growing numbers of ransomware attacks and more and more sophisticated malicious strategies. Among high-profile companies that were targeted this summer, you can find Fujifilm (Japanese conglomerate) and ADATA (fabless Taiwanese computer memory and storage component manufacturer). The summers' list of ransomware victims includes educational institutions, healthcare organizations, transport services, food suppliers, retail companies, municipal agencies, etc.

Paid Ransom Guarantee

Unfortunately, paid ransom guarantees little. Different surveys provide various data, but the overall percentage of the companies that provided ransomware payments and received control of their network doesn't exceed 10. Even with this small hope, you never know whether hackers don't have further plans for your business or didn't leave some backdoors, etc.

How Most Ransomware Attacks Start

The majority of the cyber attacks start from these top vectors for malicious actors:

  • phishing emails making their victim perform an action leading to malware installation to steal data;
  • remote desktop protocol compromise;
  • software vulnerabilities.

All the methods require preventive work with the staff. Regular cyber security awareness training is among the best ways to teach people to avoid common scams and improve cyber hygiene.

Better Defend in Advance

As last years' practice has shown, ransomware attacks don't have any limits - not in numbers, not in targets, not in payouts. Nowadays, no business can be sure that they're safe. Big businesses are enticing targets because of potential gains. Small businesses often have poor cyber security, so they are easy targets. Here are some simple practices to minimize ransomware attacks risks:

  • Be prepared. Be sure that you'll be attacked and make everything possible for it not to happen or make the attack difficult and fight back. Invest in the possibility of not to be hit.
  • Backup data securely.
  • Utilize up-to-date cyber security measures and tools.
  • Once you're hit, don't pay the ransom, but hire professional cyber security experts like MBS Tech to investigate your case. And remember that time mattes here the most - the faster, the better.

Reach out to professionals at MBS Tech, and you'll learn how to make your cyber security robust and take care of any factors threatening your business's cyber safety. 



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