Ransomware surged this August

The fact that it's so easy to deploy and that companies don't hesitate paying up makes it a popular choice among criminals.

The number of different ransomware, as well as the volume of these attacks are both on the rise, according to a new report by security organisation Check Point. The company says ransomware is gaining both popularity and strength because it is relatively easy to create a variant and deploy it everywhere. Another reason for the surge in popularity is the fact that companies don’t hesitate in paying the ransom.  

During August this year, the number of active ransomware families grew 12 per cent. The number of detected ransomware attacks was up 30 per cent. HummingBad is the most common ransomware, for the fifth consecutive month. However, the number of detected incidents dropped by more than a half.  Conficker remains the most prominent family, it was said, followed by JBossjmx and Sality.  

Nathan Shuchami, Head of Threat Prevention at Check Point said, “Businesses face a catch-22 situation when it comes to dealing with ransomware. If they don’t pay the ransom they face losing critical data and valuable assets for good; if they do pay, they only encourage cyber-criminals to utilize ransomware as it becomes a lucrative attack vector.” 

Advanced threat prevention measures on networks are needed to combat this plague, coupled with endpoint and mobile device protection, Shuchami added.  “The number of active malware families continues to remain high as cyber-criminals continue to target business’ critical assets,” Shuchami said.

“This, together with the range of attack methods utilized by the different families, highlights the scale of the challenge organizations face in securing their network against exploitation by cybercriminals.”