Cybersecurity firm blocked over 200k ransomware attempts vs small businesses in SEA

Three years after the headline-grabbing Wannacry ransomware wreaked havoc to thousands of IT systems around the globe, data from Kaspersky for Southeast Asia (SEA) prove the threat is still present particularly against small and medium businesses (SMBs) in the region.

For the first three months of 2020, Kaspersky foiled a total of 269,204 ransomware attempts against businesses with 20-250 employees in the region. This is based on the detection verdicts of the company’s products received from users who consented to provide statistical data.

“Overall, we have observed a significant decline in ransomware attacks we are blocking against SMBs in SEA. The first-quarter numbers are 69% lower compared with the same period in 2019, which is definitely a good sign. However, companies should never be complacent. Cybercriminals may show less activity but their precision has undoubtedly been improved and our telemetry showed they are more focused on targeting businesses and organizations now,” said Yeo Siang Tiong, GM for Southeast Asia at Kaspersky.

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Per country statistics during the first quarter of 2020 showed all territories in Southeast Asia (SEA) logged a decrease in ransomware detected compared with the same period last year. However, globally, one-in-three of ransomware blocked by Kaspersky in 2019 was targeted toward corporate users. This shows that cybercriminals are increasingly targeting businesses and enterprises as opposed to individual users.

Top 10 countries

Indonesia remains among the top 10 countries in terms of share of SMB users almost infected with this threat. The five nations with the highest percent of attempts in Q1 2020 include the Russian Federation, Brazil, China, Bangladesh, and Egypt. Wannacry remains the most popular ransomware globally.

“We can safely say that the companies are now highly aware of this danger after the Wannacry incident three years ago. The current pandemic situation which forced employees to work remotely, however, blur the line between enterprise and personal security, therefore increasing the surface of attack cyber criminals can exploit. Adding in the financial strain on this sector, we are offering SMBs in the region our solution and services for free to help them seal their confidential data and assets against this costly threat,” said Yeo.

Free online course

The global cybersecurity company has launched a 20-30 minutes free online course zeroing in on how companies can secure their current remote working environment. It is accessible through this link.

Aside from this training, Kaspersky also offers small and medium enterprises in SEA six months free licenses for Kaspersky Security for Microsoft Office 365. This tool is an advanced, all-in-one threat protection for Microsoft Office 365’s communication and collaboration services. It curbs the spread of malicious threats including ransomware, viruses, Trojans, phishing, among others.

Interested companies can find out more about this promo via this link.

  • As ransomware is a threat businesses should not overlook, Kaspersky experts share simple tricks on how to fend off this online menace:
  • Equip your employees with a high level of awareness in terms of social engineering tricks. It is advisable to employ a training that features level-by-level learning such as Kaspersky Automated Security Awareness Training.
  • Always update your operating system to eliminate recent vulnerabilities and use a robust security solution with updated databases.
  • Use a security solution that has specialized technologies to protect your data from ransomware such as Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business. Corporate grade endpoint security suites also have patch management and exploit prevention capabilities that would be helpful against these threats.
  • Always have fresh back-up copies of your files so you can replace them in case they are lost (e.g. due to malware or a broken device) and store them not only on the physical object but also in cloud storage for greater reliability.
  • Remember that ransomware is a criminal offense. You shouldn’t pay. If you become a victim, report it to your local law enforcement agency. Try to find a decryptor on the internet first — some of them are available for free here.
  • Businesses can enhance their preferred third-party security solution with free Kaspersky Anti-Ransomware Tool.

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