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February 17, 2022

BlackByte ransomware attack on the San Fransisco 49ers

On Sunday, the San Francisco 49ers team confirmed that they were a victim of a ransomware attack by the ransomware gang Black-Bite. They indicated in a public statement on the day of the game, that the IT network of their headquarter was affected and they are working to restore their systems. They did not participate in the Super Bowl this year, narrowly missing entry in a game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Meanwhile, the ransomware gang BlackByte stated with the ransomware claim on the Darknet about a ransom of $530 million. They had previously encrypted IT systems and leaked 2020 invoices to the public as leverage. Ars Telefonica noted that the published document consisted of hundreds of invoices from Pepsi and AT&T, among others. In total, the data already published is a 292 MB archive and this is just the beginning. Because BlackByte is gradually leaking more and more documents to the public as leverage to force the San Francisco 49ers to pay their ransom.

The BlackByte ransomware gang is a global group that attracted attention in June 2011 with its first attacks. A few days before the attack took place, the FBI and the U.S. Secret Service published a report, warning about the hacking group. They had previously attacked "government, financial, food, and agricultural" systems in November 2021. The ransomware gang specializes in vulnerabilities in IT networks to gain access to systems. They then encrypt them and demand a large ransom for decryption.

Ransomware remains one of the biggest threats to businesses as cybercriminals attempt to compromise networks and encrypt sensitive data to demand ransom payments.

The lure of potentially easy money attracts cybercriminals of all levels to ransomware, from specialized ransomware gangs, such as BlackByte, that keep the malware to themselves, to Ransomware-as-a-Service groups that rent out their illicit product to low-level malicious hackers. 

With new ransomware gangs coming from all corners of the world, it's important to understand how they operate and what they look for when identifying their next victim. Learn more about the mindset of a cybercriminal here.

Ransomware attack patterns designed for enterprises are often difficult to detect because they are constantly evolving. In the past, cybercriminals have often targeted the same entry points into an organization and attempted to infiltrate them with malware.

Today, attack patterns have evolved. Ransomware attacks are now more targeted and focused on finding the right target. Cybercriminals also use AI and machine learning tools to search for victims who are not only valuable but also vulnerable to a cyberattack.

We collected, researched, and analyzed ransomware attacks and then looked for trends in the most common vulnerabilities that attract ransomware criminals. By understanding their patterns and techniques, we have developed the ransomware blueprints. You can use it to see how ransomware gangs view your business and IT landscape. With the help of our blueprints, you can identify risks and avoid becoming the next victim.

And this is how it works:
  1. We provide you with an Attack Surface Blueprint: The criminal's view of your company is compared with your current view.
  2. We identify the gaps - the vulnerabilities in their network that the criminals can see, but that you are not currently monitoring or protecting.
  3. We provide you with a detailed action plan to prevent and defend against ransomware attacks.

Prevention alone is not enough. The better protected your business is, the less likely you are to be attacked. How to get started? Learn more about ForeNova's Ransomware Blueprint, the industry's first overview of how ransomware gangs view your organization. If you provide us with some basic information, the ForeNova team can create a customized plan for you and improve the security of your corporate network.

Get Your Attack Surface Blueprint


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