Security Breach Update
6 December 2019

Ransomware attacks are impacting businesses of every size in every sector

Ransomware attacks are impacting businesses of every size in every sector

This malware, which restricts access to a company’s IT infrastructure, is often totally debilitating, resulting in opportunity and productivity costs that accompany the already high price associated with ransomware recovery.

Now a report from the National Cyber Security Center in the Netherlands is shedding some light on just how expansive this really is.

The report found that 1,800 companies around the world are currently impacted by ransomware, a staggering number that officials believe underrepresents the real sum, since many ransomware incidents go unreported.

What’s more, the report found that cybercriminals often rely on a single network intruder to plant the malware.

These credentials can cost as much as $20,000 on the Dark Web, but they are readily available, and businesses need to know if their information is available on underground marketplaces to protect their IT from infiltration.

Ransomware attacks have proven to be a low-risk, high-reward endeavour for many cybercriminals, which means that these attacks are unlikely to abate any time soon.

Instead, SMBs should turn their attention towards maintaining a robust defensive posture capable of ensuring that their company name isn’t added to the growing list of companies impacted by ransomware.

Recent Breaches

Netherlands – Vistaprint – Small business marketing product provider

Exploit: Exposed database

Risk to Small Business: Severe: Vistaprint left an unencrypted database exposed, allowing anyone to access information related to customer service calls, chats, and emails. After the company was publicly alerted to the oversight on Twitter, they brought the database offline. The database has been exposed since November 5th, giving cybercriminals extensive access to sensitive customer data. At the very least, the episode was embarrassing for Vistaprint, which was exposed in a public forum and forced to issue a public notification of their poor data management standards. This hard-to-quantify reputational damage can be an impediment to businesses operating in competitive, digital spaces where customers are increasingly unwilling to do business with companies that can’t protect their data.

Risk to Exploited Individuals: Severe: In addition to information related to users’ customer service interactions, the data breach compromised personally identifiable information, including names, email addresses, phone numbers. The company can’t guarantee that this information wasn’t accessed by bad actors. Since personally identifiable information has a robust market on the Dark Web, those impacted by the breach should closely monitor their online accounts for suspicious activity, and some users may want to enrol in identity monitoring services.

Customers Impacted: 51,000

United States – Great Plains Health – Local hospital

Exploit: Ransomware

Risk to Small Business: Severe:  A ransomware attack disrupted many services at Great Plains Health, including email and other internal communication technologies. As a result, the healthcare provider has cancelled some procedures and appointments, while continuing to provide emergency services as needed. Whether Great Plains Health ultimately decides to pay the ransom or to attempt a recovery from backups, the result will undoubtedly be expensive. Especially when coupled with the opportunity cost and reputational damage that accompanies a data breach, the consequences of a ransomware attack can be financially devastating and long-lasting.

Customers Impacted:  Unknown

Being proactive in developing a cybersecurity plan can be the difference in successfully defending a breach or losing millions to a harmful attack.

Protect your data, privacy and reputation, talk to a TCT sales team member today.

Robert Brown
6/12/2019

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