Tag Archives: ransomware

Studies Show Ransomware up 6,000% and Reaps Billions and Phishing Emails are Used in 91% of all Cyber-Attacks

A recent IBM study shows that ransomware increased 6,000 percent in 2016 over 2015. According to the report, ransomware was present in almost 40 percent of all spam email messages. Ransomware is big business, since according to IBM Research, over 70 percent of business victims of ransomware pay the ransom for the key to get … Continue Reading

The State of Cybersecurity in 2016 and the (potential) Great Cyber Fire

Cybersecurity hit the news hard in 2016. The number of high profile, and troubling, cyber incidents increased significantly. The Democratic National Committee and one of Clinton’s top advisor’s being hacked, with leaked emails by Russia, according to intelligence reports, may have influenced the U.S. election. Theft of document from the Mossack Fonseca law firm in … Continue Reading

2016 Was the Year of the Data Breach

Although every year we lament about the significance of data breaches in the past year, 2016 was by far the worst. Data breaches were rampant, victimizing every industry and numbing consumers in the process. It was so bad that consumers began to throw up their hands and say “My personal information is out there anyway. … Continue Reading

Large Majority of Businesses Pay to Unlock Ransomware

2016 has been a banner year for ransomware cybercriminals. We have seen a dramatic rise in the use of ransomware, and businesses continue to become victims to ransomware, primarily through phishing and spear phishing schemes. The cybercriminals are getting so brazen, that when they attack a business with ransomware, they actually provide instructions on how … Continue Reading

November the Worst Month Yet for Healthcare Breaches

We have repeatedly reiterated numerous warnings to the healthcare industry about malware and ransomware [see related posts here and here]. Our predictions have unfortunately become true, as November was the worst month ever for healthcare data breaches, according to self-reports to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR). In the month of November 57 incidents of … Continue Reading

Phishing as a Service

A recent report from Imperva, Inc. has identified a Phishing as a Service (PhaaS) being offered on a Russian website. The United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team defines phishing as “an attempt by an individual or group to solicit personal information from unsuspecting users by employing social engineering techniques. Phishing emails are crafted to appear … Continue Reading

New IBM/Ponemon Study Shows Low Organizational Cyber Resilience

A new IBM/Ponemon Study released late last week, 2016 Cyber Resilient Organization, reveals that only 32 percent of IT and security professionals believe that their organization has a “high” level of cyber resilience. The study interviewed 2,400 IT and security personnel across the world. The study shows that 66 percent of those professionals believe that … Continue Reading

Privacy Tip #61 – Beware of Fake Apps that are Gearing Up for the Holiday Season

The New York Times reported last week that “hundreds of fake retail and product apps have popped up in Apple’s App Store in recent weeks”—just in time to deceive holiday shoppers. The Apps use well-known brand logos to deceive consumers. According to some, there has been a dramatic increase in fake apps this year over … Continue Reading

FTC Releases Tips and Advice on Ransomware

On November 10, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released tips and advice for businesses and consumers on ransomware. For businesses, the FTC released Ransomware – A closer look and a companion video, Defend against Ransomware. The FTC’s recommendations for businesses include: Have a tested business continuity plan in place to reduce disruption in the … Continue Reading

Forrester Cyber Predictions for 2017: Harsh Reality

Forrester recently issued its “2017 Predictions: Dynamics that Will Shape the Future in the Age of the Consumer,” which among others, makes interesting predictions relating to cybersecurity risks coming up in 2017. The predictions include: The CIO and the Brass Ring—“In 2017, CIOs will take the plunge and become business leaders to address external and … Continue Reading

Malware Attacks Against Health Care Sector Rose 67 percent in Q3 of 2016

The NTT Security Q3 Quarterly Threat Intelligence Report states that the healthcare industry is the fifth most targeted industry for ransomware (behind financial services, retail, manufacturing and technology) for all cyber attacks. Malware increased in the health care sector by 67 percent in the third quarter of 2016. Viruses and worms account for 63 percent … Continue Reading

CryptoWall Ransomware Hits New Jersey Spine Center

The New Jersey Spine Center was hit with a variant of CryptoWall  ransomware on July 27, 2016 that encrypted its electronic health record and its backup files. A double whammy. 28,000 patient records, including names, addresses, Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, and account information were part of the files that the hackers were able … Continue Reading

Yuba Sutter Medical Center Hit With Ransomware

Yuba Sutter Medical Center in California (Yuba Sutter) has notified its patients that it has suffered a recent ransomware attack that caused parts of its network to be incapacitated. As a result, patient files were unable to be accessed, and patient treatment was delayed. The attack occurred on August 3, 2016, and clinical data and … Continue Reading

Locky Ransomware Continues to Hit Health Care Entities

FireEye Labs has reported that the Locky ransomware continues to hit the health care industry hard and has increased in the month of August. Although the telecommunications, manufacturing, and aerospace/defense industries are also being targeted with Locky ransomware, the health care industry is being attacked with greater frequency and intensity. The health care industry should … Continue Reading

Ransomware and Malware Continue to Plague Health Care Organizations

We continue to warn health care organizations about the real and serious risks associated with ransomware and malware, but organizations don’t prepare for it adequately and are getting hit hard. Just this past week, several healthcare organizations have publicly announced that they have been victims of ransomware and malware. The organizations include a dermatology practice … Continue Reading

Privacy Tip #46 – Protect Your Home Computer from Ramsomware

Even though we have reported numerous accounts of ransomware attacks against businesses, according to a recent survey, individuals continue to be the primary target by hackers employing ransomware. Individual home computers are easy targets for hackers because individuals usually do not invest as much in data security measures as businesses do. The ransomware surfaces with … Continue Reading

Symantec releases “Ransomware and Businesses” report

Symantec Corp released its annual “Ransomware and Businesses” report this week outlining the increasing sophistication of ransomware attacks. Individuals continue to be the primary target of ransomware attacks as they usually have the weakest security measures. Although the health care industry has clearly been targeted recently, the report states that the service industry and manufacturing … Continue Reading

World Energy Council warns utility industry of advanced malware

The World Energy Council recently warned the utility industry that one of the top threats to the energy sector is advanced malware attacks. The warning noted that the utility sector is vulnerable because of the size of the organizations, which lend them to have multiple networks, including industrial control systems, payment systems and customer service … Continue Reading
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