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Public sector organizations least likely to engage with ransomware actors

(Image credit: Shutterstock / vs148)

Public sector organizations are the least likely of any to engage with ransomware actors after an attack, according to a new report from Veritas Technologies.

Almost nine in ten (86 percent) public sector organizations refused to pay the ransom after being hit by an attack, compared to 43 percent of private sector companies.

Veritas suggests this resilience is directly linked to the simplicity of the public sector’s cloud infrastructure. In the public sector, organizations use 6.43 cloud services on average, while the global average sits at almost double this amount: 11.73. At the same time, just five percent of public sector firms use more than 20 cloud services, compared to the global average of 16 percent.

“Despite the pressure it has come under, it’s clear that the public sector is leading the way in terms of ransomware resilience,” commented Andy Warren, UK&I Director - Public Sector at Veritas Technologies.

“Being able to restore data quickly and effectively is a key part of this. This is proven by the fact that the public sector is the most likely to recover over 90 percent of its data after a successful ransomware attack. This is compared to 69 percent of organizations across all sectors who were able to do so.”

The public sector hasn't rested on its laurels during the pandemic, either, with IT defence spend maintained throughout 2020. Public sector organizations were the most likely to have increased their IT security budgets, Veritas claims, with almost three-quarters (73 percent) recording a rise. The average across all industries was just 46 percent.