What is Triple Extortion Ransomware and How Can You Protect Against it?

Cybersecurity is one of the top concerns for businesses in 2022. The importance of having a strong cybersecurity strategy was highlighted in 2021 as attacks against businesses increased 50% from the previous year. It’s a staggering statistic that is causing billions of dollars in damages and lost revenue around the world.

As the incidence of ransomware attacks have increased, IT professionals began to develop methods to mitigate the damage caused by such an attack. This led to what many called double extortion where the ransomware was only part one of the hack and part two was threatening to leak the sensitive data online if the ransom wasn’t paid.

If the initial ransomware attack is layer one, and the threat to leak documents is layer two, then what is layer three? This refers to a threat by hackers to use stolen data to target clients or vendors that the business works with. Suddenly, the business isn’t just concerned about getting the data back or having it leaked online; they now need to be concerned about the privacy and security of the people and businesses they work with.

Essentially, hackers are betting that businesses will pay to protect their reputation and those they work with rather than lose long term clients. In many cases, the hackers have been proven to be correct. They put their victims in a difficult situation where there is no winning solution and are ultimately paid a ransom.

Thankfully, there are ways to protect against triple extortion ransomware.

Handle Customer Information with Care

Ideally, avoiding a ransomware attack completely is the solution for most businesses. However, there are ways to prevent hackers from using the triple extortion method to try and circumvent other cybersecurity protocols. One of the most important things to do is to store customer data securely and encrypt any sensitive information that hackers may be able to use in an extortion attempt.

Far too many businesses have been caught storing sensitive customer information poorly and often without encryption. This makes the triple extortion ransomware method very effective for hackers because they can simply use the available data to go around business policies and attempt to collect a ransom from someone outside the business.

Obviously, this threat could prove to be very damaging to a businesses’ reputation. If hackers were to begin targeting other businesses or customers based on the information gleaned from the initial ransomware attack then those same targets may lose trust in the company they were previously working with. This could then ultimately lead to long term revenue loss.

Businesses like law firms, medical offices, and financial institutions need to be especially concerned about triple extortion ransomware. Should their customer’s sensitive data be stolen, it can prove very valuable in the hands of a hacker.

Step Up Cybersecurity

Having robust cybersecurity is key to stopping ransomware attacks. Unfortunately, many businesses do not invest in improving their digital security. In-house IT teams are often at their capacity and focused on immediate issues like device problems or employee support rather than thinking ahead to the changing landscape of cyber-attacks.

Managed IT solutions can be a fantastic solution for small and medium-sized businesses looking to keep up with their security needs. With managed IT, businesses can count on a team of experts working on their IT needs at a fraction of the cost of hiring an in-house IT team.

With the team working on all IT needs, businesses can feel confident that the latest security measures are being taken to protect data against ransomware attacks.

Educate Employees Regularly

Technology moves quickly and so do cybersecurity threats. Some experts are already talking about cybersecurity threats in the metaverse while many people still have no idea what the metaverse even is. Many employees are given some basic education about cybersecurity when they are hired and there is little to no follow up. Other companies may offer an annual training program. Some of the most secure companies not only educate employees but use tools to test their skills with real world threat testing in order to identify areas for further education.

In addition to having great cybersecurity software and policies; employers also need a strong employee education program to help spot and stop cybersecurity threats in their tracks.

Partner with Cybersecurity Experts

Most businesses today are concerned about the risks posed by cybersecurity threats. This is why more and more businesses are partnering with a managed IT provider to improve their overall operations.

Perry ProTECH is trusted to deliver exceptional advice and service. By having their team of cybersecurity experts on your side, you can feel confident in your ability to weather the latest in ransomware threats. To learn more, contact them today.

2022-02-28T12:15:31-04:00March 8th, 2022|
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