The city of Atlanta was hit by a ransomware attack that crippled several of its systems, according to the city’s news reports. The attack caused outages on both internal and external facing applications, including systems that citizens use to pay bills and access court documents. Hackers demanded a ransom of $51,000 in bitcoin to unlock the system. Days after the attack, city officials were still struggling to keep the government running with many of their digital processes and services still being held hostage by the hacker’s cyber attack.
While the ransom demanded by the attackers in Atlanta is expensive, the reputational risk from this attack is much costlier. Rebuilding trust and confidence with employees and the public after these types of attacks can prove to be challenging.
Ransomware attacks are becoming increasingly common, and there are more variations of ransomware than ever before. Ransomware is a type of malware that infiltrates networks and restricts access to files and applications. Ransomware attacks are also becoming easier to initiate and harder to defend against. In fact, an IBM study found that 70 percent of businesses have been attacked by ransomware.
Are you confident the systems and people you rely on will protect you and your information from being held hostage in a ransomware attack?