Advantage IT Management Blog

Turns Out Paying Ransomware Hackers Is a Bad Idea After All

Turns Out Paying Ransomware Hackers Is a Bad Idea After All

Ransomware has taken over the security industry, as we are sure you have seen from the endless headlines associated with it. All business owners must remain cognizant of the dangers that ransomware represents. A new study has found that organizations infected by ransomware that wind up paying the ransom are not necessarily better off--in fact, paying the ransom could have disastrous consequences.

According to a survey conducted by Censuswide, which polled 1,263 security professionals from all over the world, paying the ransom for a ransomware attack could potentially be devastating for some organizations. Here are the results:

  • 80% of organizations that paid their ransomware attackers the ransom experienced a second attack.
  • Of these organizations, 46% believe that the same hackers were responsible.
  • 46% of organizations that paid the ransom found that at least some of their data was corrupted.
  • 51% of organizations did not experience data loss or corruption.
  • 3% were not able to retrieve their data at all.

This study makes it clear that one thing is absolutely certain with ransomware: you should never, ever trust a hacker who has encrypted and stolen your data to return it to you unscathed. There is just no sense in this concept. When you pay hackers to decrypt your data, you are not only furthering their agenda by funding future attacks, but you are also showing that the concept of ransomware works, which encourages other cybercriminals to propagate them.

Of course, things are rarely this simple, especially in the realm of cybersecurity. The recent surge in “double-extortion” variants of ransomware place a lot of pressure on organizations to pay the ransom, even if they do have data backup systems in place to circumvent the threat. If a victim does not pay up in these double-extortion cases, the ransomware hacker threatens to release the data, forcing victims into an uncomfortable position. Since some companies have to adhere to strict data privacy guidelines, they are backed into a corner in this regard. It’s despicable, but it is just one example of how threats grow and evolve over time.

We recommend that all businesses take two simple steps against ransomware: implement a data backup solution (it’s good to have this anyway) and establish a powerful frontline defense against any security threats, not just against ransomware.

Advantage IT Management has qualified and certified technicians that can help your organization implement the best security measures and tools on the market. With these security measures in place, you can know that you have the best chances of dodging the next big ransomware attack out there. To learn more, reach out to us at 251-662-9770.

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