We all know the pleasure we feel when we dig into an old pair of jeans and pull out a crumpled $5 bill, or when we finally get around to vacuuming our car (“Hey, I don’t remember eating onion rings in here”) and find a few bucks in loose change. It’s as if the universe has taken a moment to smile on us.
Now imagine that, instead of finding enough money to buy some more onion rings (“Oh yeah, I remember when I ate onion rings in here — wow, that was a long time ago”), you get your hands on a cool $1.85 million. Pleasure isn’t the word for that. Euphoria is.
Well, in a sense, that is what owners, investors, and anyone else who has a financial stake in your organization could feel if you choose a superior site uptime monitoring solution. Why? Because new research has revealed that $1.85 million is the average price tag that organizations pay to recover from a ransomware attack — a figure that has more than doubled in the last year. Let’s unpack this by taking a look at ransomware, and then explaining the link to site uptime monitoring.
What is Ransomware?
Essentially, ransomware is a type of malware that infects a computer, and blocks access to it unless victims pay a fee (a.k.a. a ransom). And if that was not nefarious enough, there are two other things about ransomware that need to be part of the story.
The first is that victims are given a very limited amount of time to pay up. If they fail to do so, then the threat — which is often carried out — is they will permanently lose access to their data, or their data will end up being disclosed on the dark web or elsewhere. The second is that even after they pay the ransom in full, only 8% of victims get 100% of their data back, and 29% get up to 50% of their data back. In the legitimate business world, this kind of chronic non-fulfilment would lead to excessive customer loss, and probably lawsuits and investigations. But on the cybercrime landscape, it’s standard operating procedure. There is no complaints department or review site (“We were very disappointed in this hacker who failed to return all of our data, but we are adding a star because communication was prompt”).
Where a Site Uptime Monitoring Solution Enters the Picture
A superior site uptime monitoring solution cannot block ransomware attacks. For strategies and tactics on that front, we recommend this helpful article at eSecurityPlanet.com, and this site by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).
However, a superior site monitoring solutions CAN do something that hackers earnestly hope that potential victims do not realize: immediately alert them to a ransomware attack — even if it’s at 3:00am — so they can rapidly roll-out an uncorrupted back-up and carry on without disruption or (and here is the euphoric part) having to pay $1.85 million or more in ransom/recovery costs.
Then, the organization can move to fortify cybersecurity defenses and reduce the size of the attack surface (probably by deploying many of the recommendations highlighted by the sources listed above), ultimately reducing the likelihood of future ransomware attacks.
The Bottom Line
Ransomware is on the rise, with the number of reported incidents surging 183% between the first two quarters of 2021. A superior site uptime monitoring solution won’t stop these attacks or frankly even slow them down. Hackers are notorious for doing things over and over again until they stop working — and unfortunately, ransomware is quite profitable. But it can give organizations the warning and time they need to strengthen their defenses, and in the process potentially save an average of $1.85 million.
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