Cyber Insurance Company Warning of 6X Increase in Ransomware Attacks: Not Just Healthcare is a Target

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Wedge’s CFO recently forwarded me an article from the finance side of things that is painting an alarming picture. We’ve been talking a lot about how the Healthcare industry has been the main target of ransomware attacks but an article put out on is painting an even bleaker picture for small businesses as a whole. According to cyber insurance company Tokyo Marine HCC, they have seen a 6-fold increase in ransomware attacks over the last four years, mainly targeting small businesses, with the costs of responding to these attacks up almost 10 x during that period.

It looks like the ransomware attackers have now finely honed their “business” and their testing of the market has shown how lucrative this business can be. Most businesses have been educated in the news by all the attacks, they know what ransomware is and how they have to pay the ransoms via bitcoin. Now that the ransomware business model is mature, with those hit by the ransomware being reassured that their data will be released upon payment, cyber criminals are upping the demands. Ransoms are jumping from the $10k-$30k range up to the six and seven figure range. Of course it also doesn’t help that insurance companies have joined the fray and are now covering part, if not all, of the losses from these attacks. Knowing that there is a deep-pocketed insurance company in the background that will be paying for the ransom is causing an upward shift in costs overall.

Getting back to the Healthcare industry, they have been the targets for so long because they typically have data that they cannot afford to go without for too long before their patient care starts suffering and before life and death situations start creeping into the equation. Not only that, but healthcare networks have also been known to provide good computing machinery for bitcoins mining, tons of good private and confidential data that could be used for blackmail or extortion schemes, not to mention that most of the OT machinery and diagnostic equipment running on the network cannot be easily patched with downtime costing the organization for every day they are not in operation. This doesn’t even touch on the potential for sabotage with patient misdiagnoses!!

Now, hackers are finding that other SMEs, such as accounting firms and retailers, can be just as affected as the healthcare industry by cutting off access to their critical data. Any industry that has mission and business critical data that is not adequately protected could be and will probably be an easy target. Even if they are covered with cyber insurance, the way costs are increasing, ransomware attacks are going to continue having a negative impact on everyone’s pocketbooks.

That’s why Wedge is so focused on ensuring that its WedgeAMB product is made available to provide the protection that these target SMEs need. With a deep content inspection and AI and machine-learning-based platform that can detect and block ransomware in real-time, WedgeAMB provides the extra blanket of protection that all SMEs need; PREVENTING ransomware from even entering the network and locking up mission critical data. SMEs can fight back by enabling more accurate real-time protection that will stop them from being another ransomware statistic. WedgeAMB is being offered for FREE on a 90 day trial. Contact us at: to find out more! It takes everyone working together to solve this growing ransomware epidemic.

About Wedge Chief Scientist

Husam Kinawi, Chief Scientist Dr. Kinawi has a PhD and MSc in Computer Science from the Universities of Calgary, Canada and London, UK. In 1997, he co-founded Mpower Technologies Inc., a wireless telecommunications software company. In 1999, Dr. Kinawi co-founded (NASDAQ: AIQT), a Boston-based e-Business applications firm. Dr. Kinawi has over seventeen years of research and development experience working with industry leaders such as Newbridge (Alcatel), Siemens, United Technologies, and Apple in the areas of distributed information systems, embedded applications and wireless Internet solutions. Dr. Kinawi has also spoken at several major conferences, published several research papers, and is the holder of several patents in the area of mobile and wireless devices.
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