October 1, 2021

Prevent a Ransomware Attack by Knowing Your Enemy

The next big cybersecurity threat

Forenova Blog Series  

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

The lure of potentially easy money attracts cybercriminals of all levels towards ransomware, from specialist ransomware gangs who keep the malware for themselves, to ransomware-as-a-service groups who lease out their illicit product to low-level malicious hackers who want to get in on the action.  

The challenge is, the enemy is constantly changing. In fact, cybersecurity researchers recently warned of four emerging families of ransomware that under the right circumstances, could become the next big cybersecurity threat. 

Rasomware-as-a-service gains momentum

One of them is LockBit 2.0, a ransomware-as-a-service operation that has existed since September 2019 but has gained major traction over the course of the past few months. Those behind it revamped their dark web operations in June – when they launched the 2.0 version of LockBit – and aggressive advertising has drawn attention from cyber criminals. Since that launch, LockBit has compromised 52 organizations around the world, including Accenture. 

The rise of these ransomware groups just goes to show that, even as established groups seemingly disappear, new players rise to take their place. Many of these will adopt the tactics and techniques of successful ransomware outfits that came before them to make attacks as effective as possible. 

With new ransomware gangs emerging from all corners of the globe, it’s critical to understand how they operate, and what they’re looking for when identifying their next victim. Go inside the mind of a cybercriminal here to learn more. 

Ransomware attack patterns affecting organizations can often be difficult to discover, as they continue to evolve. In the past, cybercriminals would often target the same entry points in an organization and try to infiltrate it with malware. 

Today, the attack pattern has evolved. Ransomware attacks are now more targeted and focused on finding the right target. Cybercriminals are also leveraging AI and machine learning tools to search for victims who are not only of high value but also vulnerable to a cyberattack. 

We’ve been collecting, studying, and analyzing ransomware attacks – looking for trends in the most common exposures attracting ransomware criminals. By understanding their patterns and techniques, we’ve developed the ransomware blueprint which is the view ransomware gangs have of your enterprise and IT landscape. Using the blueprint, you can see exposures and risks, and avoid being the next victim. 

Here’s how it works:

  1. We provide your ransomware blueprint: the criminal’s view of your organization overlaid your current view.
  2. We identify the gaps – those exposures the criminals can see, but you’re not currently monitoring or protecting.
  3. We give you a detailed action plan to prevent and deter ransomware attacks.

Prevention isn’t enough, you need to deter criminals before they formulate a plan for attacking your organization. Just think about driving through a quiet neighborhood at night. You’re likely going to see houses with lights on, but there’s always one or two that are completely dark. When criminals look for an easy target, they’re likely to go after a house that looks empty – and no lights on can be a good indication. By simply having light timers and keeping a light on at night, you can deter criminals from targeting your home. 

Your Attack Surface Blueprint

The same goes for ransomware attacks. The more protected your organization is, the less likely you are to be attacked. How do you get started? Learn more about ForeNova’s ransomware blueprint, the industry’s first inside look at how ransomware gangs are viewing your organization. By providing some basic information, the Forenova team can create your custom blueprint and set you on the path to a safe and secure enterprise.