We knew that WannaCry wasn’t going to remain the biggest ransomware news for long, but we certainly didn’t expect the next big thing to strike so soon either. Earlier this week, a ransomware gang managed to collect the biggest known ransomware payout in history, a cool $1 Million USD.
The WannaCry operation, which affected over 200,000 computers in 150 countries, only managed a total of $142,479 worth of bitcoin as of June 24. Not bad, but certainly not as lucrative as $1 000,000.00.
Aside from the type of ransomware used, the major difference between these two record-setting ransomware incidents is the scope of the attacks. WannaCry was designed to be more of a “spray and pray” type of attack and hence had a larger scope. This new attack, on the other hand, was a targeted attack aimed at only one company.
This particular victim was actually a South Korean web provider named Nayana. The attack, which held 153 Linux servers captive, affected more than 3,400 websites hosted by Nayana. Given the stakes – loss of customer data, business opportunity, revenue, and trust, as well as potential legal actions – Nayana felt it had no choice but to pay up.
This record-setting ransom payment will certainly have serious repercussions. Cybercriminals will now be more inspired than ever to launch their own ransomware attacks. The only way to discourage future attacks is by not paying the ransom. Sadly, that’s easier said than done. It’s easy to preach until you become a victim and it’s your business on the line.
We’re sure to see a whole new wave of ransomware soon. Until then, make sure that your backup and disaster recovery plans are up to par and look to enhance the security of your network.