Impact of Ransomware
The impact of ransomware may vary from initial blockage to high-level blackmailing situation, usually a new sort of malware that is used to extract a ransom from the owners of compromised machines.
Ransomware encrypts their hard drives and demands that the owner pay a ransom in bitcoin to unlock it and restore their data instead of stealing data from computers. Data is permanently destroyed if the owner does not pay the ransom because the encryption is difficult to break. Cybercriminals have made ransomware highly popular; according to the FBI, 4000 ransomware attacks occurred daily in 2016.
An organization’s ability to function can be negatively impacted by a ransomware assault. Even if the company is properly prepared and has working backups, it could take hours to restore affected systems. Worse yet, it may take days or weeks for less prepared companies or those whose backups may have been compromised by the attack to fully recover. As a result, sales may fall or halt entirely while they are recuperating.
An organization’s reputation may suffer as a result of a data breach or ransomware assault. Some consumers can interpret a successful assault as evidence of lax security procedures, or they might be so negatively affected by a service interruption that they decide to do business somewhere else.
The cost of ransomware is unexpected and high. An organisation may have other costs in addition to the potential loss of revenue, some of which may be visible and others of which may not.
The cost of the ransom payment (if made); the cost of remediating the incident, which may include replacement hardware, software, and incident response services; insurance deductibles; legal fees and litigation costs; and public relations expenses are some of the more prominent expenditures. Increases in insurance premiums, a decline in the value of reputation and trade names, and a loss of intellectual property are examples of less evident expenses.
A hostile actor would encrypt several files during a ransomware assault, rendering them unusable along with frequently the systems that rely on them. These encrypted files are frequently permanently locked if a ransom is not paid, forcing the organisation, if it can, to regenerate the data. However, there is no assurance that a threat actor will act kindly and give a decryption key even if a ransom is paid. Furthermore, even if a key is given, it’s still possible that the ransomware assault caused serious catastrophic damage, necessitating the need to restore the afflicted systems.
Furthermore, the loss of this information might trigger legal action or result in the loss of a competitive advantage if a threat actor stole a trade secret, proprietary information, or any Personally Identifiable Information (PII).