• Virgil Dobos

Multi-Cloud and the increasing risk of Ransomware


In the 2020 Ransomware Resiliency Report, Veritas found that only 36% of respondents said their security has kept pace with their IT complexity, underscoring the need for greater use of data protection solutions that can protect against ransomware across the entirety of increasingly heterogeneous environments.


Need to pay ransoms

Typically, if businesses fall foul to ransomware and are not able to restore their data from a backup copy of their files, they may look to pay the hackers responsible for the attack to return their information. The Veritas research showed companies with greater complexity in their multi-cloud infrastructure were more likely to make these payments. The mean number of clouds deployed by those organizations who paid a ransom in full was 14.06. This dropped to 12.61 for those who paid only part of the ransom and went as low as 7.22 for businesses who didn’t pay at all. In fact, only 20% of businesses with fewer than five clouds paid a ransom in full, less than half the number (44%) for those with more than 20. This compares with 57% of the under-fives paying nothing to their hackers and just 17% of the over-20s.


Slow recovery times

Complexity in cloud architectures was also shown to have a significant impact on a business’s ability to recover following a ransomware attack. While 43% of those businesses with fewer than five cloud providers in their infrastructure saw their business operations disrupted by less than one day, only 18% of those with more than 20 were as fast to return to normal. Moreover, 39% of the over-20s took 5-10 days to get back on track, with just 16% of the under-fives having to wait so long.


Inability to restore data

Furthermore, according to the findings of the research, greater complexity in an organization’s cloud infrastructure, also made it slightly less likely that they would ever be able to restore their data in the event of a ransomware attack. While 44% of businesses with fewer than five cloud providers were able to restore 90% or more of their data, just 40% of enterprises building their infrastructure on more than 20 cloud services were able to say the same.


Businesses recognize the challenge

The Veritas research revealed that many businesses are aware of the challenge they face, with just 36% of respondents believing their security had kept pace with the complexity in their infrastructure. The top concern as a result of this complexity, as stated by businesses, was the increased risk of external attack, cited by 37% of all participants in the research.


Need for investment

Nearly half of businesses (46%) shared they had increased their budgets for security since the advent of the COVID pandemic. There was a correlation between this elevated level of investment and the ability to restore data in the wake of an attack: 47% of those spending more since the Coronavirus outbreak were able to restore 90% or more of their data, compared with just 36% of those spending less. The results suggest there is more to be done though, with the average business being able to restore only 80% of its data.


Back to basics

While the research indicates organizations need to more comprehensively protect data in their complex cloud infrastructures, the survey also highlighted the need to get the basics of data protection right too. Only 55% of respondents could claim they have offline backups in place, even though those who do are more likely to be able to restore more than 90% of their data. Those with multiple copies of data were also better able to restore the lion’s share of their data. Forty-nine percent of those with three or more copies of their files were able to restore 90% or more of their information, compared with just 37% of those with only two.


Global trends

The safest countries to be in to avoid ransomware attacks, the research revealed, were Poland and Hungary. Just 24% of businesses in Poland had been on the receiving end of a ransomware attack, and the average company in Hungary had only experienced 0.52 attacks ever. The highest incident of attack was in India, where 77% of businesses had succumbed to ransomware, and the average organization had been hit by 5.27 attacks.


To read the full 2020 Ransomware Resiliency Report, please visit:

https://www.veritas.com/defy/ransomware



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